The Truth About My Job: Nurse Practitioners
Can nurse practitioners deliver care to patients? Physicians’ Primary Care's Kimberly Catania explains.
It's easy to judge another industry from the outside, with ideas formed by what we see on TV, hear on the news or experience through our friends. But not all stories and stereotypes are true. The best way to debunk myths about an industry? Turning to those who know it best.
THE MYTH: Nurse practitioners are not capable of providing care to patients.
THE TRUTH: With all the different levels of medical providers and associates out there, it can be difficult to keep track of who has what authority. “Nurse practitioners are educated and capable to assess, diagnose and prescribe and treat patients,” says Kimberly Catania, an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner (ARNP) with Physicians’ Primary Care. They hold their own license and work with physicians rather than for them in the state of Florida, where physicians still review and sign off on their charts (they may work independently in other states). “We can pretty much do as they do,” Catania says. “We provide preventative health care, follow-ups, basic medicine and chronic illness management.”
Nurse practitioners also have a master’s degree and hundreds of clinical hours under their belt, Catania says. “People should trust and feel comfortable being treated by a nurse practitioner,” she adds.