Blogs: The Reinvented Pharmacist

Nurse Practitioner Showdown

Published Online: Wednesday, September 4, 2013
“Nurse Practitioners Seek Right To Treat Patients on Their Own” was the headline of a recent Wall Street Journal article. The story began as follows: “Nurse practitioners in five states are fighting for the right to treat patients without oversight from doctors, as they can in many parts of the country.”

Supporters of this right suggest that because of the looming shortage of primary care practitioners and because of studies suggesting that nurse practitioners do this job very well, nurse practitioners need this freedom.

Without taking sides on their position—although I would be on the nurse practitioners' side—the question I want to raise is how and why has nursing been so successful in advancing its professional role and image?

What can pharmacy learn from nursing? One thing I think is that nurses seem to be more unified politically than pharmacy. What do you think we can learn from them?
Fred Eckel, RPh, MS, Editor-in-Chief of Pharmacy Times
Blog Info
This blog focuses on what our Editor-in-Chief sees as the future of pharmacy.
Author Bio
Fred Eckel, RPh, MS, is the Editor-in-Chief of Pharmacy Times, a position he has held since 2002. Mr. Eckel is a professor at the Eshelman School of Pharmacy, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He serves as executive director of the North Carolina Association of Pharmacists.

In this blog, Eckel will provide commentary on relevant issues impacting pharmacists and pharmacy professionals, including the merging of pharmacy benefit managers, the implications of health care reform, the conversion of major drugs from prescription to over-the-counter, trends in pharmacy careers, and opioid abuse. He will also discuss legislative issues that impact pharmacists, and comment on the evolving role of the pharmacist.
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