Someone’s Got a Screw Loose: Bid To Loosen Rules On Mid-Level Providers Prompts Legislative Debate

And it’s the Georgia State legislature and those pesky self-serving lobbyists. This is not a blog bashing mid-level providers. I’m all for mid-level providers on physician lead healthcare teams. I know this is a heated topic and too much emotion often clouds honest debate. I’m sure the militant members of my former profession will have plenty to say, but if we’re honest, what the heck does the following even mean:

Georgia is considered the most restrictive state in terms of allowing advanced practice registered nurses to practice to the fullest extent of their education and training

            “To the fullest extent of their education and training???” Would someone please break this down for me. What does this even mean? Does it mean the 650 clinical training hours in my mid-level training program which is consistent with most NP training programs? Does it mean those wasted nursing theory and leadership courses that had nothing to do with clinical practice? I can only pontificate based on my experience of being a mid-level provider in states with both full practice authority and states requiring collaboration. You know what?? There was NO DIFFERENCE in the way I practiced. In fact, when collaboration was required, I was a safer more competent provider. I’m all for all members on the healthcare team having a place and vital roles, but this rhetoric and lies need to stop. 

            In addition, the lie that’s been proven false:

The proposed scope-of-practice changes, she said, “will increase access to care for the people of the state.’’

The article talks about imaging and opiates in one breath than about increasing access in another breath. These are all the con being played on legislators for full practice authority which is nothing more than a power grab. Can we say strawman??  And this next statement in the article is something I really hate: 

“We’ll have a significant physician shortage in the next couple of years.’’

            Not a nursing problem to solve. Nurses should focus on the bedside RN shortage and let physicians solve the physician shortage. One discipline is not a replacement for shortages in another discipline. With the residency Match now over this week, how many unmatched physicians will there be out there without a residency to go to and without the ability to practice medicine for which they were trained. More residency spots and more physicians.

Have a nice day.

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Robert Duprey MD

Robert is a 2nd career physician (MD); a combat Veteran with the US Army; a former psychiatric nurse practitioner; an independent researcher; a medical writer; and now having passed USMLE Steps 1, 2CK, 2CS, and 3, is a residency applicant.