ACPOC - The Association of Children's Prosthetic-Orthotic Clinics Founded in 1978

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Nursing Role Essential in Prosthetic Clinic Team

This presentation will outline in a general and in a specific way the role of the registered nurse within our prosthetic clinic team. The role is one of patient support and education, coordination of team activities, liaison between the team and patient/family, and resource person for patient/family in locating services. A qualitative survey of families demonstrates the importance of nursing in the clinic team.

The paper will discuss experience over eight years that the author has in this role. The paper will describe a functional role and will include examples of specific activities in which patients/families are engaged.

Nursing within our particular clinic utilizes a traditional role of assessment, triage, education, and coordination of services on behalf of the patient. Additionally, we provide an interesting variety of educational and support services to children with limb loss and their families. Examples include a patient scrapbook, prosthetically fitted dolls, play groups for the children with upper extremity limb loss, and individualized techniques for meeting patients' needs. The single most significant event that has strengthened team/patient relationships is an annual prosthetic picnic sponsored by the team members.

Gillette Children's Hospital, 200 E. University Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55101