Advanced nurse practitioners have been fighting for years for the right to write prescriptions and operate practices without an agreement with a physician.
The pressure to expand the scope of nurse practitioners’ practice has intensified with studies saying that many millions of Americans live in areas with primary-care physician shortages.
A wider scope of practice would include, for instance, letting nurse practitioners diagnose patients, order tests, complete death certificates and initiate involuntary psychiatric commitment for unstable patients without a supervisory relationship with a physician.
“What we’re for is team-based care where it’s the right provider, the right care at the right time. Everyone contributes to the care, but we’re not necessarily interchangeable.”
“Independent practice and team-based care take healthcare delivery in two very different directions,” an American Medical Association spokeswoman added. “One approach would further compartmentalize and fragment healthcare delivery, while team-based care fosters greater integration and coordination.”