A massive push to increase the number of nurse practitioners and physician assistants and to extend their scope of practice is under way. The stated goal is to address a real or perceived shortage of primary care physicians. This effort worries many doctors who are concerned that patients are getting short-changed in the process. But is this concern justified or is it simply motivated by protectionist interests?
Our guest is Dr. Rebekah Bernard, a successful family physician from Fort Myers, Florida. She is board member of Physicians for Patient Protection, an organization calling for more transparency regarding the difference in training between physicians and non-physician providers, and advocating for legislative action to avoid misrepresentation of the capabilities and knowledge-base of nurse practitioners.