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Demand for Nurse Practitioners to double in 2014

Tuesday, April 16, 2013   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Melissa Moody
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April 9, 2013 (Healthcare Global) With the introduction of Obama Care in the US in 2014, the health care industry will have to double its current number of Nurse Practitioners over the next ten to fifteen years to keep up with the demand of medical care.

Since Primary Care Physicians can barely keep up with the high demand of patients now, imagine what it will be like next year when upwards of 30 million people will finally have access to health insurance under Obama Care. The demand for quality health care professional will significantly increase just to keep up with the number of new patients.

Dr. Wanda Filer, a Physician in York, Penn., and a board member of the American Academy of Family Physicians says, "We need all hands on deck. We need more family physicians. We need more primary care nurse practitioners; we need more Physicians Assistants need pharmacists. Everyone with a focus on the patient,”

The US is facing a desperate need for Primary Care Physicians. While it is estimated that several thousand Primary Care Physicians are practicing today, by 2050 that range is estimated to increase to over 52,000. Annual spending on primary care is approximately $200 billion. It is no surprise that current Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants, Pharmacists and others are stepping up to the plate to fill the gaps in coverage. Should Primary Physicians be worried?

Rand Corporation Health Economist David Auerbach thinks that there is good reason for Primary Care Doctors to be concerned. Nurse Practitioners can treat 85 per cent of what a Primary Care Doctor can treat. For powerful medical organizations like the Family Physicians and the American Medical Association, all is not lost. Groups advocate that providers should work together with the physician running the show.

"Currently there are 12 states with active legislation looking at utilizing nurse practitioners at the top of their education to meet patient care needs,” says Tay Kopanos with the American Association of Nurse Practitioners.

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