Here's an interesting statistic from the American Academy of Family Physicians: In areas where there are few physicians, there are still usually more doctors than nurse practitioners.
I was sent that stat and more after writing a blog post responding to the AAFP's and the American Medical Association's (PDF) insistence that in the drive toward team-based healthcare, physician leadership is an absolute requirement for any healthcare team.
While physicians have presented a unified front, they stand in isolation.
Nurse practitioners criticized the AAFP and called it "misdirected and out of step” on the issue. With a nod to the idea that the care-coordination-focused medical-home practice model is the new foundation of team-based care in the U.S., the NPs noted that none of the organizations that recognize practices as medical homes requires practices to be physician-led to earn the organization's seal of approval. (I had trouble believing that last part, so I called the National Committee for Quality Assurance, the Joint Commission and the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care, and they all confirmed it was true.)
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