Letter to the Editor
Why has it taken this long for emergency medicine to realize where APPs are headed? (“Why Did AAEM Take a Stance Against APP Independent Practice?” EMN. 2019;41:4; http://bit.ly/2JXgzNj.) This is not a surprise to me. Why our specialty has ignored the writing on the wall has always been a mystery to me.
The nursing profession at the leadership level has always believed they were as good as physicians, so now they are trying to take control. Obamacare opened the door even more when that system saw an opportunity to get cheaper care. There was no consideration for physician shortage, which would have necessitated more medical schools. The government's answer was cheaper care with APPs regardless of their lack of the education. The public had no idea and still doesn't. They think APPs are physicians.
The leadership of our specialty and medicine sold us down the river by not taking a stronger stance during the Obamacare discussions. By letting uneducated politicians make the decisions, we are now left with a situation where better health will not be achieved with less educated providers.
I was a nurse with eight years of practice in neonatology and oncology. Even though I was proficient in my specialties, I needed to go to med school if I wanted to practice medicine. This whole issue has made me angry. I had spoken up about this issue often with ACEP and other organizations, but no one wanted to listen. This was one of several reasons I retired from 25 years of EM practice a year ago.
As sad as it is, the horse is out of the barn. This freight train is rolling along, and I don't think it can be stopped. The ANA has become stronger than any of our medical organizations.
Brenda S. Prince, DO