More independence sought for 5,000 nurse practitioners

  • Article by: MAURA LERNER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 13, 2012 - 9:36 PM

Legislature to debate change in oversight by physicians.

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gemie1Dec. 13, 12 6:33 PM

This makes sense. We have a shortage of primary care doctors, because medical students are going into the specialties that are more lucrative. Another way to handle the storage is to have qualified medical students be subsidized by universities and the government to go into this field of medicine. The incentive is less debt, otherwise, we need the nurse practitioners to fill in the need.

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bsuqb1Dec. 13, 12 6:50 PM

As a mid level provider I'm all for it. I would anticipate and expect compensation to increase as well. Just not to high as to consider us the "rich" portion of society. We would then be looked down upon....

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aardvark878Dec. 13, 12 6:54 PM

I'm all for this change. My employer provides free access to a nurse practitioner, and she's awesome. I have trouble believing that she'd be less so if there weren't a physician (who isn't even in the office) in the background. What, exactly, is a doctor who hasn't even seen or talked to me doing to ensure I receive quality care? Is he or she sitting there reviewing every chart for every visit? I doubt it...else going to the nurse practitioner wouldn't be so cost effective. So let me decide if I'm comfortable with the nurse or not. If not, there's nothing stopping me from going to the doctor. And yes, nurse practitioners shouldn't be allowed to diagnose or treat the same range of problems as a doctor. But as a front line for minor issues, I'm happier going to the nurse than I'd be taking time out of my day to haul off to my doctor...and sit and wait as my appointment time comes and goes. And then get the huge bill at the end that I really can't afford.

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keaton12Dec. 13, 12 7:20 PM

I think nurse practitioners are great. However, if insurance companies are doing this to make more money, then no. I was misdiagnosed by a physician's assistant and spent even more money getting to the root cause of the problem. They should stay specialized and develop their skills in a very focused area. My nurse practitioner was fabulous in her area of expertise. That's all the further I'd want her to go unless she completes even more training. Next, they'll start charging for internet diagnosis.

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workforit1Dec. 13, 12 7:40 PM

Anyone who thinks this is a good idea is not a thinker, or is not living in the real world. I have yet to meet a nurse PA that is worth the visit. It is sad excuse for a doctor. I am sure they are nice people, but I am going to the doctor to see a doctor. This will be the beging of the death of the great medical system we have come to know and love. Thank you OBAMACARE and all the sheep who voted for him.

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minneg56Dec. 13, 12 7:45 PM

This kind of old school idea. Honestly, you don't need a Dr. to administer an injection, determine you have a fever, sore throat, sinus or bladder infection. "Growing up back in the day" the mom of one of my friends was a nurse. In a neighborhood crawling with kids, it wasn't unusual for her to be seen giving stitches at the kitchen table on occasion!

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muss0034Dec. 13, 12 8:07 PM

They talk only about nurse practitioners, but this affects others as well like nurse anethestists. Who wants a non physician to have your life in their hands when they think they are trained to stick a needle in your neck for pain? Not me!

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theplasmidsDec. 13, 12 8:08 PM

NPs and PAs are valuable healthcare team members and serve a great purpose for uncomplicated visits, but don't for a moment think their schooling is equivalent to that of an MD. If I have the choice and it's a visit that matters, I'll always choose the MD. MDs aren't perfect, but they have more exposure to various conditions and a greater knowledge base, which helps in their diagnosing skills.

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rlwr51Dec. 13, 12 9:53 PM

I have people say it is fine because most people go to doctors for minor illnesses anyway - It usually takes a doctor to know the difference between a major and a minor illness.

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rlwr51Dec. 13, 12 9:57 PM

I have seen sports clearance physicals done by NP's at a minute clinic on kids that are known to have asthma or even a seizure disorder come back - "All clear" - "no problems".

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