By spotlighting both the nurses who care for patients with bladder and urology conditions and awareness around the physical and emotional aspects of bladder health, patients and nurses can gain and share information.
Urology nurses treat patients who can have conditions as varied as kidney failure, bladder cancer, incontinence, vasectomies, and kidney stones. Urology nurses treat adults and children and can specialize in one area. Nurses in this specialty are also able to find a career path that matches their working style–whether that is a steady schedule in a physician’s office, a varied home care schedule, a trauma unit, or a surgical center.
By using information to spread awareness and promoting the importance of bladder health, the Urology Care Foundation highlights Bladder Health Awareness Month. Nurses and patients will find resources to help with different health concerns. The organization is highlighting different conditions each week of November including interstitial cystitis, neurogenic bladder, and bladder infection/urinary tract infection; bladder cancer; incontinence, overactive bladder, and stress urinary incontinence; and bedwetting, nocturia, bladder exstrophy and other bladder conditions and diseases.
Access to information that’s accurate and up to date is essential for many reasons including ensuring patients are receiving the best treatment and care possible. But this access also helps patients normalize urology-associated problems and conditions. Frequently, patients are reluctant to talk about issues like incontinence. The more they can understand that bladder health issues can be managed with treatment from medication and lifestyle modifications, they will have a better quality of life.
Nurses in this specialty have several resources to increase their knowledge, gain connections, share information, and strengthen their leadership practice. The Society of Urologic Nurses and Associates (SUNA) is the professional organization for urology nurses and established Urology Nurses and Associates Week. SUNA holds an annual conference and works tirelessly on advocacy for urology nurses. Their efforts help ensure that urology patients get the best care possible and that nurses achieve excellence in their profession.
Nurses who work in pediatrics can find resources and a network through the Pediatric Urology Nurses and Specialists. In addition to an annual conference, this organization offers resources for nurses through webinars, pediatric-focused resources, and even special interest groups in biofeedback, research, education, and urodynamics.
After working in the field and establishing a solid foundation as a nurse and a desire to achieve expert status, nurses can work on one of three certifications through the Certification Board for Urologic Nurses and Associates. Depending on their specialty and career path, nurses may choose from three certification options: CURN® – Certified Urologic Registered Nurse, CUNP® – Certified Urologic Nurse Practitioner, or CUA – Certified Urologic Associate.
Nurses and patients can work together for the best possible urology-related outcomes.