Care Team Members

Nurses

Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)

Nurses who work in collaboration with other members of a healthcare team to directly care for patients and their families. They assess a patient’s needs and provide treatment including recording vital signs, collecting blood or urine samples, dressing wounds, administering medications, and delivering health education. 

Nurse Practitioner (NP)

Registered Nurses (RN) with graduate degrees and advanced knowledge and skills. They are trained to assess, diagnose, treat, order diagnostic tests, prescribe medications, make referrals to specialists and manage overall care. Nurse Practitioners often work closely with physicians and other health professions as part of a team. Some NP’s work independently and manage their own clinics.

Registered Nurse (RN)

Nurses who directly care for individuals, families, groups, and communities. They coordinate patient care as part of a team with physicians and other health providers. RN’s differ from LPN’s in education and the things they can do. 

Doctors

Anesthesiologist

Doctors who specialize in anesthesiology, which is the medical science of relieving pain and managing the body’s vital functions, such as breathing, blood pressure and heart rate. These are the doctors who will 'put you to sleep' when going into surgery or having a procedure.

Endocrinoloist

Doctors who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the endocrine glands, which control hormones.

Emergency Medicine Specialist

Commonly called ER doctors, these are medical doctors who specialize in emergency care. You will likely encounter an ER doctor when you visit the emergency room. They can diagnose and treat many medical emergencies and will refer you to other health professionals for further treatment if necessary.

Fellows

Doctors who have completed residency in their specialty. Fellows do further training and research to become experts in their area.

Gastroenterologist (GI)

Also known as a GI doctor, gastroenterologists specialize in disorders of the gastrointestinal tract, including the stomach, intestines, and pancreas.

Geriatric Medicine Specialist

These doctors are usually Family Doctors or Internists who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of conditions and diseases of older adults.

Hepatologist

A doctor who specializes in the treatment of conditions affecting the liver.

Hospitalist

A hospitalist is a doctor who focuses on caring for you if you are admitted to the hospital. They will coordinate your care, consult with your other doctors, and keep your loved ones informed about your condition

Hospice and Palliative Medicine Specialist

Doctors who help prevent and relieve suffering to patients who have a serious illness or have only a short time left to live.

Intensivist

Specialized doctors (also called Critical care medicine specialists) who specialize in the care of people who are in an intensive care unit (ICU).

Medical Students/Interns

Students studying to become doctors.

Nephrologist

Doctors who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the kidney, bladder, and associated organs and tissues.

Pathologist

A medical doctor who identifies diseases by studying cells and tissues under a microscope

Primary Care Doctor

These doctors are also called family doctors or primary care practitioners. These are the doctors that focus on preventative medicine and monitor your health over time. They do many things including regular check-ups, disease screening, immunizations and general wellbeing check-ins.

Psychiatrist

A medical doctor who specializes in providing psychological help. A psychiatrist can prescribe medication in addition to providing psychological counselling in some cases.

Residents

Doctors who are qualified to practice medicine but are training to become specialists, like gastroenterologists.

Surgeon

A medical doctor who has additional medical training in surgery. These are surgeons you may encounter as a patient with liver disease

      • Transplant Surgeon – Specialize in organ transplants. They can perform surgeries to transplant a liver or other organ to a patient who is suffering terminal illness from a defective or damaged organ
      • Vascular Surgeons – Medical doctors who specialize in the diagnosis, medical management, and surgical treatment of diseases of the blood vessels.

Allied Health Professionals

These are healthcare professionals that may be involved in the management of your condition that are separate from nursing and medicine.

Health Care Aide (HCA)

Provide direct care, personal assistance and support to patients who are ill, elderly or disabled. They assist patients with activities such as bathing, grooming, dressing, and toileting. They may help with feeding or exercise and in some settings help patients take their medications. 

Laboratory Technician

Responsible for obtaining, processing, testing and reporting the results of a variety of specimens including blood, body fluids, tissues and other environmental samples. Laboratory technologists perform routine and specialized procedure to analyze samples used in diagnosis, treatment, monitoring, epidemiology and research

Medical Imaging Technologist

Care for you while you are having medical imaging done, such as an MRI, CT scan, x-ray, or ultrasound. Medical imaging technologists also operate the equipment to conduct the procedure. 

Occupational Therapist (OT)

Support people with getting back to everyday activities (i.e. the ‘jobs of living’). They help patients change some part of their life by developing skills, improving physical and emotional abilities, adapting the environment or changing the way they do activities so the patient can better cope with an injury or illness.

Pharmacist

Pharmacists support caregivers and other health care professionals and help patients manage their medications. 

Physiotherapist (PT)

A movement specialist that helps people get moving when they are coping an injury or illness. Physiotherapists will help individuals restore or maintain movement, prevent injury, and promote fitness, health and wellness.

Psychologist

Works with patients and families to help them understand, explain and make changes to their behavior so they can function at their best. They help patients and families adjust to new or difficult situations. A psychologist may also test for psychological features or conditions, and provide a diagnosis or treatment recommendations.

Registered Dietician

Experts in food and nutrition that help people achieve healthier eating patterns and lifestyles to prevent and treat chronic diseases. They communicate with doctors and other healthcare professionals to provide nutrition information and practical therapeutic diets and meal guidance to patients.

Respiratory Therapist (RT)

Monitor and care for patients with breathing problems. They help manage airways in patients – from those with asthma to patients who are on life support and need a ventilator to help them breathe.

Social Worker

Assists patients and families with navigating systems that provide resources and services. A clinical social worker will counsel patients and their families to cope with their unique situations and will be involved in a patient’s care plan or discharge plan.

Speech Language Pathologists (SLPs)

Focus on a patient’s swallowing and speech and language capabilities. SLPs will assess and treat swallowing and communication disorders, and provide education and counselling about swallowing and communication impairments to patients and their families.

Transition Coordinator

Provides the link between hospitalized patients and services available in the community. Assessments and referrals are often done for Home Care Services as well as placement in the various streams of assisted living. This support is often provided in discharge planning. 

Transplant Coordinator

Coordinates your transplant related care.

Emergency Medical Services (EMS) 

These include healthcare professionals that come to your aid when you call an ambulance. If more treatment is needed they will take you to a hospital.

Advanced Care Paramedic

Often the first responder at scenes where people are in need of emergency medical care. They administer pre-hospital medical care, which may include stabilizing an injured or ill person who needs to be transported via ambulance to health care facilities for further treatment

Emergency Medical Responder

Responsible for transporting ill or injured patients from scenes of emergency and/or between facilities. They operate ambulances or other modes of transportation, assess emergency scenes and patients, and provide treatments such as emergency medical care, ventilation or oxygen administration, and automated defibrillation.

Primary Care Paramedic

Responsible for transporting ill or injured patients from scenes of emergency and/or between facilities. They operate ambulances or other modes of transportation and assess emergency scenes and patients. Primary care paramedics may treat patients by administering some medications and utilizing basic life support.

Important Resources

Alberta ambulance services

 References 

This content was adapted from material by

My Health Alberta

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