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Nurse Practitioners Love Their Jobs, For Now

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, October 3, 2013

Shifting Roles
"NPs and doctors are a mirror image of each other," Miller says. "The things that NPs are happy about, increasing income and clinical autonomy and the feeling of more power within the system, most doctors are experiencing exactly the opposite. Doctors feel like their clinical autonomy is being eroded and that reimbursements are being cut, and in a lot of cases they are. Before they were preeminent on the healthcare team and now it's more like they are part of the team and not the dominant player."

Miller says other surveys have found dissatisfaction among registered nurses. "They're dealing with a lack of autonomy. Everyone is breathing down their necks. They have a physically more demanding job than an NP, who is pretty much interacting with patients and nurses are doing physical things such as lifting the patients and running from bed to bed in a hospital. They actually complain a lot about their bodies just not holding up," he says.

"Nurse income is not that bad but it is not as good as what you're getting as an NP. They don't have that satisfaction and they are not really feeling like they are managing the patient's care like an NP would but they are doing sort of the grunt work."

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