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View Diary: Interview With Thad Wilson, President, American College of Nurse Practitioners (45 comments)

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  •  Actually, it's a strong and important position. (6+ / 0-)

    With this argument --

    Over the last 5 – 10 years the number of physicians choosing primary care residencies has dropped dramatically.  In 2009 about 7% of medical school graduates chose primary care.  The United States is in the middle of a primary care crisis. If NP’s are left out of health care reform, the crisis will only worsen.

    The NP community has unified around a call for the American healthcare system to recognize the primary care they provide to patients as equal in quality to that provided by physicians.

    In effect, they are asking that various forms of economic and other discrimination against their profession, in favor of physicians, end under the reform legislation. That is an important issue and their decision to focus 100% on the issue makes a lot of sense.

    I've had tremendous respect for non-physician primary care providers since my experience with U.S. Navy hospital corpsmen during the Viet Nam War. I was lucky enough to avoid combat, but fell seriously ill three times, once as an enlisted man, once as an officer candidate and later as an officer. All three times an MD flubbed the dx and prescribed generic palliatives for emergent conditions. All three times a corpsman petty officer made the right call, covered the doctor (officer) and got me treated correctly.

    During those same years my brother was an enlisted man in the Army Medical Corps and the Surgeon General Corps at Walter Reed. So, for all the years since, I've paid attention to the non-physician primary care providers I've encountered and my respect for the quality of care and treatment they afford their patients remains undiminished.

    The discrimination against nurse practitioners and other non-physician primary care providers that exists in many corners of the system we have now violates the fundemental American principle of equal pay for equal work and is invidious. I applaud the nurse practitioner community for taking a stand against it and forgive them for not weighing in on public option, single payer, etc.

    "If you are going to tell people the truth, be funny or they will kill you." Billy Wilder 1906 - 2002

    by LeftOfYou on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 08:53:30 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  I think you miss point. No position on reform (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Nina, quadmom

      of the health care system by the organizations of front line health care providers such as nurse practioners, physicians assistants and pediatric MD's.

      These organizations, on the other hand, are very political as their status as providers is determined politically by state and Federal regulatory agencies

      They lobby strongly for their position in the system but then bail out on the systems negative effect on the patients (and themselves).

      I suppose better no position than to be like the AMA which has been a very negative influence on US health care beginning with it's successful drive to eliminate the public health visiting nurses which provided basic home care to the poor but which doctors felt infringed on their money making prospects so AMA killed it.

      •  The American Nurses Association is For (0+ / 0-)

        universal health care and -- favors single payor.   The ANA is the largest credentialling body for nurse practitioners so while the amercian College of Nurse Practitioners does not have a formal position their largest credentialling body does.  

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