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HIV/AIDS Nurse Practitioner

Work with Doctors to devise treatment plans for HIV and AIDS patients.

What does a HIV/AIDS Nurse Practitioner do?

The desire to help those who are fighting life-threatening illnesses drives your career. As an HIV/AIDS Nurse Practitioner, you undertake more responsibility for patient care than a Registered Nurse, though not as much as a Doctor. The HIV/AIDS Nurse Practitioner serves as the second-in-command to the patient’s primary Doctor, and helps create treatment plans for HIV-positive patients and those diagnosed with AIDS.

Treating HIV/AIDS patients differs in many ways from other nursing specialties. As an HIV/AIDS Nurse Practitioner, you set two goals for each patient: prolong the onset of AIDS and help the patient function as they normally would. Often, you refer patients to other professionals, such as Psychologists, to help them cope with the emotional and mental aspects of a chronic illness.

You undertake all the duties of a Registered Nurse, such as updating the patient’s medical records, drawing blood samples for testing, and educating the patient on effective self-care. Yet your duties extend beyond these basics. As a Nurse Practitioner, you can create and alter treatment plans, diagnose patients, and, in some cases, prescribe medications.

Your work with HIV/AIDS patients focuses both on treating physical problems, such as illness or pain, and on encouraging emotional well-being. Treatment plans consist of the medications the patient needs and recommendations for proper diet and exercise. All the different parts of your treatment combine to help others live successfully even in the face of chronic illness.