syracuse.comNew law to give NY nurse practitioners more freedom from doctors
By James T. Mulder | email@example.com
on April 01, 2014 at 4:53 PM
Syracuse, N.Y. -- Nurse practitioners in New York will be able to operate more independently of doctors under a bill slated to become law as part of the state budget enacted this week.
The Nurse Practitioners Modernization Act will remove the requirement of a written practice agreement between an experienced nurse practitioner and a doctor as a condition of practice. The law will take effect Jan. 1, 2015.
Seventeen other states and Washington, D.C., have already done this.
The state Medical Society and doctors groups at the federal level have adamantly opposed efforts to give nurse practitioners more independence. They cite concerns over patient safety and quality of care because nurse practitioners do not have as much training as doctors.
But there's research that suggests there's little difference in the quality of care provided by nurse practitioners and doctors. Nurse practitioners say they want to operate more independently so they can pick up some of the slack created by a growing doctor shortage.
Nurse practitioners can diagnose and treat illnesses, prescribe drugs and do many of the same things doctors do. A nurse practitioner is a registered nurse who has received a master's degree and training in a specialty area such as primary care.
In a prepared statement, Denis Tarrant, president of Nurse Practitioner Association of New York State, said the law "will ensure that New Yorkers will have access to high quality health care."