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by Sarah Winter, DNP, FNP-BC
When I graduated with a Doctor of Nursing Practice, completed my clinicals, passed my boards, obtained my licensure to practice, and landed my first job, I assumed everyone knew my background, goals, and the meaning of the term nurse practitioner (NP). Well, as has been revealed to me on numerous occasions, I was wrong. Just recently, I had a conversation with a physician friend who had no idea I started my career as a registered nurse (RN), working in a hospital. Here are a few tidbits you may not have known about NPs:
Now, I did not write this to lambast or criticize. Instead, my goal is awareness. Many of you will read this list and discount the items right off the bat, some will already know everything I mentioned, and a few will (hopefully) internalize a number of my words and put them into practice.
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1 American Association of Nurse Practitioners. (2022, April). NP fact sheet. https://www.aanp.org/about/all-about-nps/np-fact-sheet
2 American Association of Nurse Practitioners. (n.d.). Nurse practitioners in primary care. https://www.aanp.org/advocacy/advocacy-resource/position-statements/nurse-practitioners-in-primary-care
3 Association of American Medical Colleges. (2021, June 11). AAMC report reinforces mounting physician shortage. https://www.aamc.org/news-insights/press-releases/aamc-report-reinforces-mounting-physician-shortage
4 Bazemore, A., Wilkinson, E., Petterson, S., & Green, L. (2019, August 15). Proportional erosion of the primary care physician workforce has continued since 2010. American Family Physician. https://www.aafp.org/afp/2019/0815/p211.html
5 Buerhaus, P. I., DesRoches, C. M., Dittus, R., & Donelan, K. (2015). Practice characteristics of primary care nurse practitioners and physicians. Nursing Outlook, 63(2), 144-153. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.outlook.2014.08.008
6 Greene, J., El-Banna, M. M., Briggs, L. A., & Park, J. (2017). Gender differences in nurse practitioner salaries. Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, 29(11), 667-672. https://doi.org/10.1002/2327-6924.12512
7 Paturel, A. (2019, April 16). Closing the gender pay gap in medicine. Association of American Medical Colleges. https://www.aamc.org/news-insights/closing-gender-pay-gap-medicine
8 Robert Graham Center. (2019, August 15). Percentage of primary care physicians falls over nine years. https://www.graham-center.org/press-events/press/all-releases/081519-percentage-primary-care-physicians-falls-over-nine-years.html
9 U.S. Census Bureau. (2013, February). Men in nursing occupations. https://www.census.gov/content/dam/Census/library/working-papers/2013/acs/2013_Landivar_02.pdf
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