California Seeks Full Practice Authority for Nurse Practitioners in Effort to Offset Doctor Shortage

California Seeks Full Practice Authority for Nurse Practitioners in Effort to Offset Doctor Shortage

California is facing a growing shortage of primary care physicians. According to the Future Health Workforce Commission and Health Force Center at UC San Francisco, California is projected to be short 8,000 primary care clinicians by 2030, including doctors, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants.

The state’s legislature are considering granting full practice authority to nurse practitioners who receive additional training and certification to work independently of doctors in an effort to offset the shortage of primary care physicians. With the additional authority, nurse practitioners would be able to treat patients without a “practice agreement” from a supervising physician.

Concerned Californians are supporting the passing of legislature to allow nurse practitioners full practice authority. More than a third of California residents believe there aren’t enough primary care providers and specialists in their communities according to a poll by the California Health Care Foundation. However, California’s doctors’ lobbies have fought the idea for legislature allowing full practice authority, arguing that it would dilute the quality of medical care that patients receive.

Nurse practitioners hold a master’s degree or doctorate in nursing practice, and the majority of nurse practitioners work in primary care. Full practice authority allows nurse practitioners to evaluate patients independently, order diagnostic tests, manage treatments, and prescribe medication.

If California passes new legislature to allow full practice authority for nurse practitioners, it would join 22 other states and the Veterans Administration in doing so. Researchers from the Bay Area Council Economic Institute also believe that it would save the state millions of dollars a year.

To learn more about California’s efforts to pass legislation granting full practice authority to nurse practitioners in an effort to offset doctor shortages, visit here.

Nurse of the Week: Air Rescue Nurse Sally Herman Spends Free Time as Volunteer for Operation Smile

Nurse of the Week: Air Rescue Nurse Sally Herman Spends Free Time as Volunteer for Operation Smile

Our Nurse of the Week is Sally Herman, 56, a nurse from Mesa, AZ who has helped hundreds of children through her work with non-profit, Operation Smile.

Herman reports that she grew up feeling like the underdog. Her parents worked hard to correct Herman’s crossed eyes, which she was frequently bullied for as a child.

Herman tells abc15.com, “I always thought if I could make it through school and get my nurse’s degree, I’m going to make sure kids have a life and don’t have to worry about deformities.”

After finishing nursing school, Herman began her career in Illinois before moving to Arizona and landing a job as an air rescue nurse. Unfortunately, her dream job was cut short when she was laid off 6 months later. That’s when she realized that she really wanted to work with Operation Smile, and allowed her layoff to bring her back to her childhood goal.

Since then, Herman has traveled the world and completed 50 trips with Operation Smile, a non-profit that provides safe medical treatment to kids with cleft palates in underprivileged countries. Each trip lasts around ten days, and during each trip Herman and her fellow volunteers fix hundreds of cleft palates, providing life-changing results for their patients.

Herman is currently back to work as an air rescue nurse, but she still volunteers regularly. To learn more about Sally Herman, a nurse from Mesa, AZ who has helped hundreds of children through her work with non-profit, Operation Smile, visit here.

Seton Hill University Announces New Online RN to BSN Program

Seton Hill University Announces New Online RN to BSN Program

Seton Hill University recently announced a new online RN to BSN program designed to allow working adults in the nursing profession to earn their bachelor’s degree online in as little as one year. Classes are set to begin in Fall 2020. 

Seton Hill President Mary C. Finger, Ed.D., tells setonhill.edu, “As Seton Hill University successfully launched its new BSN program last fall, we recognized the need to provide working nursing professionals the ability to complete their bachelor’s degree, an educational credential that a growing number of healthcare providers are requiring of their nursing staffs. Seton Hill’s RN to BSN program will provide nurses already in the field with greater opportunities to take on leadership roles and advance in the profession.” 

The new online RN to BSN program will provide immense flexibility to working professionals. Students can complete the program fully online, and it can be completed in as little as one year, with students receiving 33 credits for the RN degree and able to transfer up to 90 credits to Seton Hill. Working RNs are required to complete 60 practicum hours to earn their BSN. 

To learn more about Seton Hill University’s new online RN to BSN program, visit here

Nurse of the Week: Recent Nursing Graduate Margy Tepen Jumps Heart First Into Cardiac ICU Role

Nurse of the Week: Recent Nursing Graduate Margy Tepen Jumps Heart First Into Cardiac ICU Role

Our Nurse of the Week is Margy Tepen, a recent nursing graduate of Southeast Missouri State University, who began her new career in the cardiac intensive care unit (ICU) at DePaul Hospital in Bridgeton, MO, last month.

As a cardiac nurse, Tepen will be closely monitoring post-heart attack, post-pacemaker implantation, post-open-heart surgery, cardiac drips, heart failure, and respiratory failure patients on the cardiac ICU stepdown floor.

Tepen’s time as a nursing student helped prepare and guide her into her career. Her clinical requirements included time in a hospital cardiac care unit, which inspired her to pursue her current role in the cardiac ICU. One day, she hopes to earn an adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner degree and work alongside cardiologists.

Tepen tells news.semo.edu, “I completed an adult health clinical on the Progressive Care Unit at Saint Francis Medical Center (Cape Girardeau), and this floor had primarily cardiac and oncology patients. This is where I began to love the cardiac patients. This clinical and practicum helped me see the progression of cardiac patients and how their treatment was helping them. I was also able to gain a lot of experience in basic patient care and communication.”

During her time at Southeast, Tepen also honed her leadership skills, serving as representative and vice president for Southeast’s Student Nurses’ Association, and student representative for the Nursing Undergraduate Curriculum Committee. She is also a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success and Sigma Theta Tau.

To learn more about Margy Tepen, a recent nursing graduate of Southeast Missouri State University, who began her new career in the cardiac intensive care unit last month, visit here.

University of Texas at El Paso Appoints Leslie K. Robbins, PhD, Dean of the School of Nursing

University of Texas at El Paso Appoints Leslie K. Robbins, PhD, Dean of the School of Nursing

Effective last month, Leslie K. Robbins, PhD, has been appointed dean of the School of the Nursing at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). Robbins had been serving in the role in an interim capacity since September 2019.

As dean, Robbins holds the Charles H. and Shirley T. Leavell Endowed Chair II in Nursing. Robbins brings a rich 40 years of experience in nursing to her role as dean, with a focus on nursing administration and nursing education. She has been with UTEP since 2009 and played a key role in efforts to establish the university’s Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program in 2010.

Prior to serving as interim dean, Robbins was Associate Dean of Graduate Education and Professor of Nursing; she also held the Orville E. Egbert, MD, Endowed Chair in Nursing and Health Sciences. Robbins holds a master’s degree in nursing from UTEP and a doctoral degree in nursing from the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. She is a certified adult psychiatric and mental health nurse practitioner, and an adult psychiatric and mental health clinical nurse specialist.

Robbins tells elpasoheraldpost.com, “I feel honored and privileged to serve as dean of the UTEP School of Nursing. UTEP has a long history of educating highly qualified nurses and nursing leaders, and I look forward to continuing that tradition. With support from the school’s faculty, students and staff, we will continue to expand our impact on health care practices in the region by growing our undergraduate and graduate programs, creating new health-related research opportunities and developing strong community partnerships.”

To learn more about Leslie K. Robbins, PhD, being appointed dean of the School of the Nursing at the University of Texas at El Paso, visit here.

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