Local Nurse Practitioners respond to house bill proposal

Indiana

A nurse practitioner is an advanced practice nurse who can prescribe medicine and diagnose patients.  Republican state Rep. Ron Bacon said some people in rural areas in his district live up to 30 miles from a hospital or doctor’s office.

House Bill 1097 would eliminate a contract between nurse practitioners and physicians to evaluate 5% of charts in retrospect.

Part of the legislation states that for the first 3 years out of school, a physician will continue to review 5% of charts for nurse practitioners. After that point a nurse practitioner would not need chart reviews from a physician. Local nurse practitioners like Caitlin Krouse feel that as a primary care provider they don’t need to be evaluated in this way.

“My patients see me, and me alone. I am their primary care provider, so they come to me to manage their diabetes, their high blood pressure, their sinus infections, their allergies, lots of education about healthy diet, weight loss, all that stuff.” Krouse said.

This does not mean they will no longer collaborate, especially with specialists. The bill would not change their job but just the evaluation they recieve in retrospect from physicians.

“It increases access to care, it decreases health care costs, and the costs to patience, and then it increases patient’s choice.” Krouse said.

22 states already have this legislation in place. Some Hoosier doctors argue they want the most-educated provider with the most experience to take care of each patient, but admit there aren’t enough physicians to go around.

Monday the bill’s author decided to not have the bill heard on the House floor so he can work with the opposition. A similar bill has already passed in the house. The new plan is to compromise and re-work the proposal.

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