Chang­ing roles for nurses

Modern Healthcare - - OPINIONS/EDITORIALS -

Re­gard­ing the story “Mich. doc­tors wary of bill to ex­pand nurse prac­ti­tion­ers’ role” (ModernHealth­, June 10), while in a hos­pi­tal, are nurse prac­ti­tion­ers em­ployed by the hos­pi­tal? Are they in­de­pen­dent con­trac­tors? Are they cre­den­tialed by the hos­pi­tal? What about li­a­bil­ity? Seems to be a waste of leg­isla­tive time if hos­pi­tal priv­i­leges and work­ing in a physi­cian prac­tice are the only is­sues. I have seen many reg­is­tered nurses work as hos­pi­tal­ists and as ad­vanced prac­ti­tion­ers in hos­pi­tals and physi­cian prac­tices. The only clin­i­cal lim­i­ta­tion was the reg­is­tered nurse could not make a med­i­cal di­ag­no­sis, and in a physi­cian prac­tice, a physi­cian was re­quired to be in close prox­im­ity in or­der for the physi­cian to bill Medi­care. When a med­i­cal di­ag­no­sis is made with­out a su­per­vis­ing physi­cian, I see the lawyers hav­ing a field day. Then you re­ally need to de­ter­mine if the NP and M.D. are in­ter­change­able.

Robert Stark­weather Con­sul­tant Louisville, Ky.

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