Are Nurses the Answer to the Physician Shortage?

Apr 09, 2020

Pandemic or no pandemic, we’ve been facing a physician shortage for years. Efforts to increase the number of residents each year prove nominal. The time has come to think beyond creating more doctors. Perhaps the solution is one of our greatest resources: nurses. 

The COVID-19 pandemic may propel us towards this solution. As many facilities grant emergency privileges, we’re learning firsthand how much nurses are capable of. While we won’t always be facing a pandemic, the overall lack of primary care in the United States should qualify as an emergency. Once the dust settles and we can all leave our homes again, we’ll need primary care services - and we still won’t have enough primary care physicians. 

When you consider the nature of chronic and preventative care, empowering nurses to extend the reach of their primary care physicians is a no-brainer. Studies have shown that when treating chronic conditions (i.e. diabetes, hypertension, etc.), nurses have a consistently positive impact.

Data from the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey estimates 24% of physicians’ time would be saved if we reallocated certain preventative, chronic, and acute care tasks. This extra time allows facilities to increase their patient capacity and meet the healthcare needs of a growing population. To learn more about hiring nurses for your facility, click below to request more information.