Advanced Practice Nursing in Sierra Leone

Snapshot

APN Role Exists in Country Today:
Yes

Title:
Nurse Anesthetist
Nurse Midwife

Nationally Certified:
Uncertain

Recognize Foreign Licensure:
Uncertain

Treatment Authority:
Yes

Prescribing Authority:
Yes

Practice Autonomously:
Yes

Contact:
Sierra Leone Nurses and Midwives Board (for registration) – Registrar: Mrs. Hannah Coker; Phone: 076673741 / 033885138 / 030
Sierra Leone Nurses Association

Role

To understand the advanced nursing practice role in Sierra leone, one must understand the basic structure of nursing in the country.  Essentially, there are several levels of nurse training and several specialties offered in their training:

  • Nurse tutor
  • Opthalmic Nurse
  • Public Health Nurse
  • Maternal and Child Health Aides

Additionally, there are two specific roles of APNs in the country:

  • Nurse-Midwife
  • Nurse Anesthetist

Not much information is available on the nurse anesthetist role, however, they have been in practice for at least 5 years (Klopper & Uys, 2012).  The Nurse-Midwife role encompasses an autonomous role with assessment, diagnosis, and treatment authorities including perinatal care and sexually transmitted infection management around that period as well.

Education and Certification

The National School of Midwifery offers a 2 year program to be taken after basic nursing (Klopper & Uys, 2012).  Ongoing education and recertification is required every 2 years, implying a fairly rigorous process to maintain registration.  The Nurse Tutor, opthalmic nursing training, bachelors of science in nursing, and state registered nurse training is offered through the Faculty of Nursing, a college formerly known as the National School of Nursing.  In the meantime, Sierra Leone has been having nursing educational institutions pop-up that are not accepted and credited by the Sierra Leone Nursing and Midwifery Board because of the increased interest of individuals to become professionals in healthcare.  The endeavor to start up such schools in the country has been deemed as an illegal activity; because of this, the Nursing and Midwifery Board have been cracking down and attempting to stop this from occurring by discouraging facilities from hiring individuals with non-accredited nursing education (Sierra Express Media, 2013).

Specialties

Various disciplines of nursing training are offered through the Faculty of Nursing college, namely medical, surgical, basic sciences, and public health.  Additionally this school offers the specialty of opthalmic nursing education (Klopper & Uys, 2012).

Have information to add to this page?

References:
Klopper, H. & Uys, L.R. (2012). The state of nursing and education in Africa: A country-by-country review.  Sigma Theta Tau.  Retrieved from: http://books.google.com/books?id=SzgiwENnd4UC&source=gbs_navlinks_s

Sierra Express Media (2013).  Moves to shut down illegal nursing activities.  Retrieved from: http://www.sierraexpressmedia.com/archives/53712

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