Letters to the Editor: Thoughts from a nurse practitioner

July 9, 2010

Nurse practitioners and physician assistants are not in competition; rather, we are here to complement each others' services.

It is rather frustrating as a nurse practitioner to read what physicians think about the role of nurse practitioners and physician assistants. We are not in competition, rather we are here to complement each others' services; and yes, in underserved areas, we often serve as primary care providers.

I do not agree with the title midlevel-it is a title imposed on us by physicians and other professions. I myself am a very competent primary healthcare provider who delivers excellent patient care and follow-up. My colleagues who are DOs and MDs often come to me for my professional opinion.

It is arrogant to think that all physicians are as capable as the next, and this is true with NPs and PAs. I often find myself working late, correcting problems that the local rural ED physicians overlooked.

So please, let's stop this battle and try to work in harmony for the good of our patients.

SHANNON ETHERIDGE WHITTEN, FNP-C
Tennille, Georgia