Content Map Terms
What is a nurse practitioner?
Nurse practitioners (NPs) are health care providers who complete graduate level clinical education that allows them to practice autonomously. Nurse practitioners’ background in nursing gives them a unique perspective on your health. The nursing lens focuses on health promotion, health education and patient centered care. With their advanced education in medical sciences, NPs are able to provide rigorous, evidenced-based healthcare.
Nurse practitioners are regulated through the Health Professions Act, and must complete rigorous exams and meet college standards in order to practice.
What can a nurse practitioner do for me?
A nurse practitioner can:
- Act as the primary care provider for you and your family, similar to a family physician
- Help you manage and improve your physical and mental health
- Conduct medical and physical assessments
- Order and interpret tests, such as medical imaging and bloodwork
- Diagnose medical conditions
- Prescribe medications and write orders
- Complete disability, ICBC, WorkSafeBC, and extended health benefits forms
- Conduct minor procedures such as intrauterine device (IUD) insertion, removal of lesions, and tissue biopsies
- Refer you to medical specialists of any type
- Work with physicians, nurses, pharmacists, mental health counsellors and other providers to ensure you receive the best care
- Work in a hospital and more specialized settings across a continuum of care
How can I get a nurse practitioner as my primary care provider?
Nurse practitioners are available in many communities across B.C. To get matched with a nurse practitioner or family doctor in your community, register with the Health Connect Registry. Once registered, the team in your community will get in contact with you when a provider becomes available.
Some communities also have nurse practitioner led primary care clinics. These include:
Last Updated: July 7, 2023