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New and Noteworthy
A forum for discussion on recent news and developments in healthcare and the NP field.
Thursday, May 28, 2015

Please join me in congratulating Drs. Scott Saccomano, PhD, GNP, BC, RN, and Damon Burns Cottrell, DNP, RN, NP-BC, CCNS, ACNS-BC, CEN, on receiving two inaugural awards from The Nurse Practitioner journal in May at the National Conference for Nurse Practitioners in Philadelphia. The awards were presented as part of the 40th Anniversary celebration of the journal.

Dr. Saccomano received the Outstanding Contributor award for his exemplary clinical scholarship in writing on a variety of topics published in the journal, including several continuing-education articles over the past few years. Dr. Cottrell received the Peer Reviewer of the Year award for the quality of his reviews of other authors’ work. The peer review process helps journal editors select manuscripts for publication that meet represent quality and relevance to advanced nursing practice. The awards were a highlight of the opening ceremony.

Thanks again for attending this year's conference, and we look forward to seeing you all next year at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Ellisa Sinnicks-House, a nurse practitioner (NP) from Newfoundland and Labrador, runs the Livewell Clinic and believes that patients go to see her (as opposed to a doctor or the emergency department) to either save time or because they do not have a healthcare provider. NPs such as Sinnicks-House provide services for a fee to those who are not covered by Newfoundland and Labrador's Medical Care Plan.

"I could charge a lot more than I do, it's not my intent to get rich," Sinnicks-House said. "My intent is to fill gaps that are there, to help take some strain off the healthcare system, and help people who don't have access in other places."

Sinnicks-House states that everyone has given her positive feedback regarding her services thus far. The Canadian NP provides services including referrals, care for acute diseases, and testing/diagnoses; she charges between $20 and $30 per visit.

Let us know what you think of this NP's approach to healthcare in the comments.


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Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Sam Vafadar, PA

Senate Bill 614 would give nurse practitioners and physician assistants the authority to write prescriptions for controlled substances. People who oppose the bill believe that doctors will lose control over patient care and that prescription abuse (notorious in Florida) would become worse. Tampa-based physician assistant Sam Vafadar, however, does not believe this to be the case.

“Sometimes we see the patient much more frequently,” Vafadar said. “Unprepared visits as well. So we develop a unique relationship with the patient. As a result, we follow personality nuances, their preferences. And we can determine, I think, which patients would be more likely to abuse these types of medications."

Jay Wolfson, from the University of South Florida's College of Public Health, believes that the role of the doctor of pharmacy is missing from the bill, stating that physicians only take one pharmacology/toxicology class and that pharmacists are the ones who truly understand how drugs interact with us.

What are your thoughts on Senate Bill 614? Let us know what you think in the comments.


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Thursday, April 09, 2015

Should nurse practitioners team up with paramedics?

Los Angeles City Councilman Mitchell Englander has proposed having certain 911 calls answered by a nurse practitioner (NP) working in tandem with a paramedic as opposed to a group of firefighters. Englander's proposal comes in light of the fact that approximately 90% of calls made to the Los Angeles Fire Department request medical services.

"First, non-urgent, low level 911 call requests can be screened by LAFD Firefighter EMTs and rerouted to nurse practitioners within the LAFD organization. In their scope of practice, nurse practitioners can perform comprehensive on-site assessments and perform, treat and release, or treat and transfer. By implementing a nurse practitioner program into LAFD's EMS protocols, it should be possible to reduce unnecessary and expensive emergency transport..." Englander wrote in his proposal.  

If the program comes to fruition, the Los Angeles Fire Department will be able to handle medical emergencies in a more efficient manner. Mesa, Arizona implemented a similar program two years ago, which lead to roughly $3 million in savings on transportation and hospital admissions in 2013 alone. Los Angeles' new proposal is set to be reviewed by the City Council this month. Let's show our support for our fellow Los Angeles NPs.

[Englander Proposal]

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About the Author

Jamesetta (Jamie) A. Newland
Jamesetta (Jamie) A. Newland is a Clinical Associate Professor at New York University College of Nursing where she is the director of the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program. She is also a certified Family Nurse Practitioner in the NYU Nursing Faculty Practice. Her expertise on nurse practitioner education and practice has been sought nationally and internationally. She is the current editor-in-chief of The Nurse Practitioner: The American Journal of Primary Healthcare, the inaugural journal publication for nurse practitioners.