House Looks To Give Nurse Practitioners More Power

CBS Miami

TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/News Service of Florida) – In an issue that could spur a health-care industry fight, a House select committee Monday will take up a 155-page bill that would give nurse practitioners independence to provide medical services without physician supervision.

House leaders say giving more authority to nurse practitioners, at least in part, could help address a shortage of primary-care physicians in Florida. The bill would apply to a group technically known as “advanced registered nurse practitioners,” who have more education and training than registered nurses. Along with applying to nurse practitioners who provide primary care, it would apply to specialists such as nurse anesthetists.

But the issue is controversial, with physician organizations such as the powerful Florida Medical Association long arguing that supervision needs to continue. Also, Senate Health and Human Services Appropriations Chairwoman Denise Grimsley, R-Sebring, said Thursday she is working on a bill that would make far less-dramatic…

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