Docs support enhanced NP collaboration

With a looming workforce shortage and a shift toward collaborative care, Virginia physicians support legislation that will include the role of nurse practitioners, while also better defining surgery.

The Medical Society of Virginia, a physicians' advocacy group, is rooting for House Bill 346, which will enhance teamwork between physicians and nurse practitioners (NP) with a more consultative work structure, reported the Daily Press.

The bill, if enacted, will up the number of NPs allowed to work with a physician from four to six and will enable NPs to provide care in nursing homes and free clinics.

Recognizing the growing popularity of team-based care, the physician group also is calling for legal definitions of surgery and who should be performing it. "It's purely proactive--we support team care but want to limit surgery to the properly trained," Mike Jurgensen, Medical Society of Virginia senior vice president of health policy, said in the article.

Two bills to be introduced to the General Assembly base their definitions on American College of Surgeons-developed and American Medical Association-adopted language.

Meanwhile, nurses in the United Kingdom are warning that healthcare assistants performing "nurse tasks" are putting patients at risk, reported The Telegraph.

Nurse survey results "add further weight to the case for mandatory regulation and guaranteed training standards for healthcare assistants," Peter Carter, chief executive and general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing, told The Telegraph.

To learn more:
- read the Daily Press article
- read The Telegraph article