There is concern about the adequacy of primary care provider supply, particularly in light of the impending expansion of coverage, and there is concern about controlling health spending. One approach to addressing each is to expand the number and role of alternative primary care providers, like nurse practitioners and physician assistants. Physicians, however, have typically zealously guarded their turf. A survey of 505 doctors and 467 nurse practitioners reported in the New England Journal of Medicine reveals a wide gulf in the groups view of their value and place in the system. (NEJM Article) Nurse practitioners are significantly more likely to be female and white than doctors and they have a substantially lower annual income. About 81% of nurse practitioners work in physician practices but only 41% of doctors work in practices with nurse practitioners. Nurse practitioners see about 20 fewer patients a week and work around 8 hours a week less. About 25% of nurse practitioners feel they cannot practice to the full extent of their training due to restrictive state laws or other factors. There were very significant differences in views on the role of nurse practitioners, for example, 82% of NPs thought they should be able to lead medical homes and only 17% of doctors agreed. While 64% of NPs think they should be compensated equally to doctors for the same services, only 4% of physicians hold that view. And 66% of physicians think they provide a higher quality of service than NPs for the same type of primary care visit, but only 5% of NPs agree. Physicians hold much less positive views about the effect of expanding the supply of NPs on the quality of health services. All of this suggests that many doctors are as yet unwilling to surrender their opposition to further expansion of the role of NPs. The research, of course, strongly supports the notion that nurse practitioners provide at least equivalent quality, at a lower cost.
The World According to Physicians and Nurse Practitioners
By Kevin RocheMay 17, 2013Commentary
✅ Subscribe via Email
About this Blog
The Healthy Skeptic is a website about the health care system, and is written by Kevin Roche, who has many years of experience working in the health industry. Mr. Roche is available to assist health care companies through consulting arrangements through Roche Consulting, LLC and may be reached at [email protected].
Healthy Skeptic Podcast
This is an outstanding report on total global drug spending and trends, with projections out to 2025. It helps you understand this important area of health care, which does much...
June 1, 2021
MedPAC 2019 Report to Congress
June 18, 2019
Another example of over-priced companies trying to find some way to survive in the post-epidemic financial world. Transcarent, which does something, somehow to “access high quality, affordable care” is buying...
March 6, 2023
In an attempt to swiftly revive two floundering health care companies, a PE firm has announced the merger and recapitalization of Revive Health and SwiftMD. You know they are...
January 30, 2023
Investors have not yet learned their lesson, as Pearl Health gathers a new round of $75 million in capital for its business of supporting physicians who want to participate in...
January 30, 2023
Access ACO Care Management Chronic Disease Comparative Effectiveness Consumer Directed Health Consumers Devices Disease Management Drugs EHRs Elder Care End-of-Life Care FDA Financings Genomics Government Health Care Costs Health Care Quality Health Care Reform Health Insurance Health Insurance Exchange HIT HomeCare Hospital Hospital Readmissions Legislation M&A Malpractice Meaningful Use Medicaid Medical Care Medicare Medicare Advantage Mobile Pay For Performance Pharmaceutical Physicians Providers Regulation Repealing Reform Telehealth Telemedicine Wellness and Prevention Workplace
March 27, 2023
Why You Can’t Trust People Who Make Up Stuff About Vax Safety
A couple of studies offer a far better explanation for heart issues in athletes and…
March 25, 2023
Coronamonomania Lives Forever, Part 201
Tired of March Madness? A boringly refreshing dip into some CV-19 research summaries is recommended.
March 24, 2023
The CDC Is a Font of Methodological and Statistical Error
Several times in the last three years I and others have pointed out serious flaws…