Role of the Nurse in Providing Care to an Elderly Client

Written by emily packard
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Role of the Nurse in Providing Care to an Elderly Client
There is an increased need for nurses with expertise in elderly care. (nurse chris image by John Keith from Fotolia.com)

Gerontological nursing, or the nursing of elderly, has specific qualifications. This is because elderly patients have physical, psychological, and emotional needs that are unique. As well, they have families who need support and education. Nurses who care for elderly patients have an important and irreplaceable role.

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Role Description

According to allnursingschools.com, "Geriatric nurses care for the elderly, focusing on the development and implementation of treatment plans for chronic illnesses." Nurses who care for the elderly have to anticipate regular age-related problems as well as treat abnormal and more serious illnesses. They must do so with compassion and consideration, realising their client's psyche and emotions may be as fragile as their physical health.

Role of the Nurse in Providing Care to an Elderly Client
As people age there are many ailments that can be anticipated. (grand père image by Emmanuel MARZIN from Fotolia.com)

Family Matters

An elderly client almost always comes with concerned family. This is why allnursingschools.com says, "Their job also involves another important component---educating, supporting and counselling families of elderly patients." Thus, the nurse who provides care to an elderly patient also provides instruction and compassion to the worried family.

Role of the Nurse in Providing Care to an Elderly Client
Educating concerned relatives is in the job description of a geriatrics nurse. (young family image by JulianMay.co.uk from Fotolia.com)

Qualifications

It is not enough for a geriatrics nurse to be medically competent. As Katrina Cannon on americangeriatrics.org says, "As I watch my friends, family and the nation age, the need for caring, compassionate and competent geriatricians is critical." The nurse who cares for the elderly must bring with her a tender heart and patient way of being.

Role of the Nurse in Providing Care to an Elderly Client
Medical competency is just part of a geriatrician's job description. (operation nurse image by Andrey Rakhmatullin from Fotolia.com)

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