The primary responsibility of advanced practice nurses is to promote health, utilizing the processes and patterns that lead toward wellness. They use assessment strategies that address interactions among individuals’ biophysical, psychosocial, and spiritual states and patterns with the environment. The advanced nursing role requires data gathering through assessment. This data is relevant to the health promotion activity of the individual and their current health status. Assessment is key to identification of problems within the individual’s health and lifestyle pattern. Assessment is foundational to all other steps of diagnosing and planning of an individual or a family’s health status and in the promotion of health.
Gordon’s functional health pattern framework, discussed in your Reading, provides guidance for the individual assessment and can also help to organize the basic family assessment information. Each pattern includes age, developmental influences, cultural and environmental roles, functional abilities, and behavior patterns specific to each individual. The advanced practice nurse uses functional patterns to collect data for assessment with emphasis on development stages and risk factors, resulting in a diagnosis.