Resource Center

Clinical and professional updates to help you succeed in NP practice

12 Tips for Succeeding in Clinical Rotations: Practical Advice from Preceptors

Clinical rotations provide NP students with the real-life practice experience they need to transition from student to clinician. This month a group of Fitzgerald faculty contributed their tips and advice about how to get the most out of your rotations and get a start on a successful NP career. Read More

Certification Q&As: Feature Test Question Analysis

Studying content and concepts is critical to preparing for the NP certification exam. Dr. Fitzgerald provides important insights on the proper analysis of the exam questions to increase your likelihood of success. Read More

Certification Q&As: Costs Related to Practice

Once you complete your NP program and prepare to enter NP practice, there are several additional steps you must take, such as obtaining national certification, state licensure, malpractice insurance, and a Drug Enforcement Agency registration number. Dr. Fitzgerald explains the various fees and expenses you will incur for these necessities. Read More

NP Clinical Preceptors: Challenges and Opportunities

The rapid expansion of NP programs over the past 20 years has led to a shortage of clinical preceptors. who provide a vital link between NP curriculum and clinical application, and are thus essential to NP education and the ongoing success of the NP profession. Dr. Fitzgerald discusses common challenges associated with preceptorship and reviews strategies for successful precepting. Read More

Cognitive Errors in Clinical Diagnosis: Representativeness

Margaret A. Fitzgerald, DNP, FNP-BC, NP-C, FAANP, CSP, FAAN, DCC, FNAP

Find out if you can avoid the diagnostic error featured in this case. In the latest article in the cognitive errors series, Dr. Fitzgerald addresses the cognitive elements involved in misdiagnoses that arise when clinicians use a cognitive heuristic (short-cut) known as representativeness, which relies on pattern recognition. Pattern recognition does make clinical decision-making more manageable, but when not accompanied by an analytic approach that overrides intuitive thinking, it can misdirect clinical reasoning and lead to diagnostic error. Read More

Evaluating and Treating Vitamin D Deficiency

Vitamin D plays an important role in many areas of health, from bone and muscle health to blood pressure control. A common problem, vitamin D deficiency is associated with many chronic diseases and may increase risk for poor COVID outcomes. Dr. Fitzgerald discusses risk factors for vitamin D deficiency, testing, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of recurrence. Read More

Cognitive Errors in Clinical Diagnosis: Anchoring and Confirmation Bias

Can you decide what the next step should be in this case-based article? Dr. Fitzgerald addresses the case of a misdiagnosis that arises when anchoring and confirmation biases alter the clinician’s thoughts and impact their judgment. Such cognitive errors are flaws in clinical reasoning and lead to unconsciously making decisions based on intuitive judgments rather than analytical thinking. Read More

Cognitive Errors in Clinical Diagnosis: Attribution Errors

Follow this case and see if you arrive at the correct next step. Dr. Fitzgerald addresses the case of a misdiagnosis that arises when attribution errors affect the clinician’s judgment. Such cognitive errors are flaws in clinical reasoning and lead to incorrectly assigning meaning to other persons’ actions, while underestimating the influence of situational factors. Read More

Cognitive Errors in Clinical Diagnosis: Availability Bias and Premature Closure

Test your diagnostic skills and reasoning. Dr. Fitzgerald presents a case of a misdiagnoses arising when clinicians overestimate the likelihood of a diagnosis based on the ease with which it comes to mind (availability bias), and premature closure, when a clinician stops considering or exploring important alternative diagnoses. Read More

Testing for H. pylori: Which Patients, Which Test, How to Treat?

Helicobacter pylori infection can lead to chronic inflammation of the gastric mucosa and acid-related damage to the duodenal mucosa. Dr. Fitzgerald discusses current guideline recommendations on diagnosis, testing, and treatment for H. pylori infection. Read More

CDC Updates Recommendations for 2021-22 Influenza Season

The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) issued its updated recommendations for the use of seasonal influenza vaccines for the 2021-22 influenza season, which will coincide with the continued circulation of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Read highlights of the ACIP’s recommendations for clinicians during this year’s flu season. Read More

Sudden Cardiac Arrest in Young

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has updated its 2012 policy statement for primary care providers (PCPs) on prevention of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) and sudden cardiac death (SCD) in young people. The update includes a comprehensive review of conditions that should prompt more attention and cardiology evaluation. Read More

2021 Sexually Transmitted Infections Treatment Guidelines

The guidelines for the treatment of people who have, or are at risk for, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) have been updated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The previous guideline was published in 2015. The CDC recently reported that the number of STIs in the United States reached an all-time high for the sixth consecutive year. Read More

AHA/ASA 2021 Guideline for the Prevention of Secondary Stroke

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association (AHA/ASA) issued its most recent guideline for the prevention of stroke in patients with previous stroke and transient ischemic attack (TIA). The last guideline was published in 2014. The overall message of the 2021 update is that the risk of second stroke can be reduced with prevention efforts based on the cause of the first stroke. Read More

New USPSTF Recommendations for Colon Cancer Screening

The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) issued an update to its colorectal cancer (CRC) screening guideline that includes a recommendation lowering the age at which to start screening US adults at average risk from the current recommendation of age 50 to age 45. The new recommendation matches that of the American Cancer Society. Read More

USPSTF Draft Changes Aspirin Recommendation for Primary Prevention of CVD Events

A draft recommendation posted by the US Preventive Services Task Force proposes changes in the current recommendation on the use of aspirin for the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease. Read More

In a First, FDA Allows Marketing of Three New ENDS E-Cigarette Products

The FDA authorized the marketing of three new tobacco products, the first set of electronic nicotine delivery system (ENDS) products ever to be authorized by the FDA through the Premarket Tobacco Product Application pathway. Read More

Undergrad Nursing Programs Included in College Ranking for First Time

U.S. News & World Report’s undergrad college rankings now include undergraduate nursing programs conferring the BSN degree. Read More

Mirena IUD Now Approved for Pregnancy Prevention Up to 7 Years

The Mirena levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine device was approved by the FDA for up to 7 years of pregnancy prevention. Read More

FDA Approves Treatment of Severe Hypoglycemia That Does Not Need Reconstitution

The FDA approved Gvoke Kit for the treatment of hypoglycemia in pediatric and adult patients with diabetes 2 years of age and older. Read More

Monoclonal Antibody Tx Authorized by FDA for Postexposure Prophylaxis for COVID-19

The FDA revised the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for the monoclonal antibodies bamlanivimab and etesevimab, administered together, to include emergency use as postexposure prophylaxis for COVID-19 in adults and pediatric patients at risk for progression to severe COVID-19, including hospitalization or death. Read More

Flu and COVID-19 Vaccines Can Be Given on Same Day

Patients can receive their influenza and COVID-19 vaccinations during the same visit, the CDC advises. Individuals need not wait 2 weeks between COVID-19 and influenza vaccinations, as previously recommended. Read More

COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate Issued for Federal Workforce, Private Companies with 100+ Employees

President Biden issued a requirement that all members of the federal workforce be vaccinated for COVID-19. The rules also mandate that all employees in companies with 100 or more employees be vaccinated or tested for the virus weekly. Read More