Navigation Links
Nurse practitioners provide more primary care in states with least restrictive regulations
Date:7/8/2013

Facing a nationwide shortage of primary care physicians, some states in recent years have eased up on regulations that create barriers for nurse practitioners who want to work as primary care providers.

That easing of rules has had the intended effect. According to a new study by researchers at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, those states with the fewest restrictions on nurse practitioners' scope of practice had two-and-a-half times more patients receiving primary care from nurse practitioners than did the most restrictive states.

"We wanted to look at what happened in states that allowed nurse practitioners more or less authority," said Yong-Fang Kuo, lead author of the study. "As you would expect, it makes a big difference. We can now clearly show that states with fewer regulations means more patients get the primary care they need."

This news is directly relevant to Texans right now, as State Senate Bill 406, which eases regulations on both nurse practitioners and physician assistants, was recently approved by the Texas Legislature and signed by the governor.

Increasing access to primary care is a key focus of national health reform efforts. States with a higher ratio of primary care providers to patients have lower Medicare expenditures and lower mortality rates. The shortage in primary care physicians has happened, in part, because more and more United States medical students are choosing medical specialty fields instead of primary care. In 1998, around 60 percent of U.S. medical students chose careers in primary care. Today, fewer than 25 percent do.

In the meantime, the past two decades have witnessed an increase in nurse practitioner training programs. There are more nurse practitioners in the U.S. now than ever before. States vary greatly, however, in how extensively they regulate nurse practitioners' scope of practice. In some states, they have essentially the same authority to practice that physicians have. Other states require physician supervision and limit nurse practitioners' hospital privileges as well as the authority to order tests, make referrals and prescribe medications.

The UTMB study looked at the growth in care provided by nurse practitioners from 1998 to 2010 using state records and national Medicare data. The researchers found that the number of patients seeing nurse practitioners as their primary care provider is on the upswing. In 1998, only 0.2 percent of Medicare patients nationwide used nurse practitioners as their primary care provider, versus 2.9 percent in 2010. In Alaska the percentage was nearly 15 percent.

Over the 12-year time period studied, the highest growth in nurse practitioner primary care was in states that allowed them to practice and prescribe independently: Alabama, Alaska, Idaho, Montana, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Maine, Oregon and Vermont.

The new Texas rules, scheduled to go into effect Nov. 1, would bring nurse practitioners into closer alignment with their counterparts in those states. The bill eliminates the requirement for on-site physician supervision and allows more leeway in the delegation of prescribing authority.

The study appears in the July issue of the journal Health Affairs and was funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the National Institute on Aging, the National Cancer Institute and the National Center for Research Resources, National Institutes of Health.


'/>"/>

Contact: Molly Dannenmaier
mjdannen@utmb.edu
409-772-8790
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Nurse practitioners can boost quality of care for older patients with chronic conditions
2. Career Nurse Assistant Week Celebrated with T-shirts Awarded Daily from Caregiverlist
3. Nurse-led programs help patients self-manage RA
4. Careers in Nursing: GetEducated.com Ranks Best Online Colleges for Nurses, RNs
5. More cancer specialist nurses to improve hospital care
6. NYC Chiropractor Honors Nurses with Complimentary Visit
7. OnSomble, Inc. Partners with The Aroostook Medical Center to Enhance Nurse Understanding of the Professional Role
8. American Sentinel University Develops New Worksheet to Help Nurses Determine BSN-Readiness
9. VisionLink Nurse Call System's New Features Serve the Unique Needs of Retirement Communities
10. Spectrum Surgical Attends Society of Gastroenterology Nurses and Associates' (SGNA) 40th Annual Conference in Austin, TX
11. Study finds disagreement on the role of primary care nurse practitioners
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... , ... On Memorial Day, Hope For Heroes and USA Medical ... for the country. The nonprofit Hope For Heroes partnered with the leading provider ... for disabled military veterans, as well as police, firemen, and EMS professionals across the ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... May 26, 2016 , ... Cardiac arrhythmia is ... impact on long-term patient survival, reports a team of UPMC researchers in the ... in the Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, provide critical information that will ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... Hampshire (PRWEB) , ... May 26, 2016 , ... MadgeTech ... are designed, engineered, and manufactured in Warner, New Hampshire at the MadgeTech headquarters. With ... provide reliable monitoring solutions trusted by government agencies, including NASA. , In 2012, ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... May 26, 2016 , ... Dr. James Maisel will ... Long Island Chapter on June 4, 2016, 1:30-3:30 pm at the Farmingdale Public ... Retina Group of New York , is a Board Certified ophthalmologist who ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... 26, 2016 , ... In an effort to provide hair restoration information to the widest possible ... those who do not use the app. Dr. Mohebi, the founder of Parsa Mohebi Hair ... Live . , Dr. Mohebi says, “The positive response to the Snapchat videos we ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/24/2016)... , May 24, 2016 ... beide primären Endpunkte und demonstriert ... in ‚ausgezeichneter plus guter , ...    ,      (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130829/633895-a ... heute neue positive Daten von der MORA-Studie der ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... New Zealand , May 24, 2016 ... and informatics solutions for the healthcare sector, has been named ... New Zealand Hi-Tech Awards 2016. Dr Bruce ... fantastic acknowledgement for our team.  It,s really good to be ... burden healthcare internationally. Our products are used in 35 countries ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... May 24, 2016  Joe Marziani has joined VMS BioMarketing as senior vice president ... today. In his new role, Marziani will lead the company,s business development and sales ... improve outcomes. Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160523/371089 ... ... ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: