The 2023 legislative session is underway and the NCMS advocacy team is working hard on behalf of our members.

Recently, the SAVE Act, which would allow advanced practice nurses to practice without physician supervision, was filed again. NCMS continues to work in opposition to this bill.

10 Reasons to Oppose the SAVE Act 

  •  Eliminating physician involvement in the healthcare team will create SIGNIFICANT risks for patients. 
  •  Physicians are specially trained to make critical medical judgements. In situations where seconds matter … those extra years save lives. 
  •  Physicians have 4 years of medical school, followed by 3-7 years of residency in a hospital. Nurse practitioners attend 2-3 years of nursing school and extra training is NOT required. 
  • Physicians undergo 10,000 – 16,000 hours of hands-on, in-person clinical training.  Nurses only undergo 500 -720 required hours.  The immense amount of additional training lets physicians know how to properly address a wide range of complex health issues. 
  • There is wide variability in nursing training.  In 2019 more than HALF (60 percent) of nursing programs were mostly, or completely, online. 
  • Eliminating physician involvement means an INCREASE in healthcare costs, not lower costs as widely claimed.  The disparity is because of critical medical errors, inappropriate prescribing, and unnecessary referrals. 
  • HB 218/SB 175 allows APRNs broad authority to perform final interpretations of complex diagnostic imaging studies, like MRIs, CTs, and PETscans, WITHOUT necessary training. 
  • Evidence shows that physicians and nurse practitioners tend to practice in the same areas.  There is NO evidence to suggest allowing nurse practitioners to work unsupervised leads to more healthcare providers in rural areas.  Even in states where nurse practitioners can practice without physician involvement there has NOT been an increase in healthcare practitioners in rural areas (According to research from the American Medical Association). 
  • To increase coverage in rural areas, policymakers should focus on incentives such as higher pay and education loan repayment programs. 
  • HB 218/SB 175 does not prohibit and implicitly allows APRNs to perform surgery and procedures under certain parameters. 

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The Role of the NCMS Medical Team Task Force (MTTF)

In light of our evolving health care system and practice, the MTTF was formed in 2016 to review the existing requirements for physician supervision and to determine if a modernization of those requirements was warranted.

An Insider’s View of the Medical Team Task Force Webinar – May 5, 2021

This webinar shares more about the work of the NCMS’ MTTF and its charge, the key issues it has addressed and its recommendations to the NCMS Board of Directors on PA team-based care.

If you prefer to watch this webinar in segments, we have separated it into three parts and loaded them on YouTube:

Part 1: About the MTTF and a Review of SB 345 (20 mins.)

Part 2: Point/Counterpoint on MTTF and SB 345 (23 mins.)

Part 3: Group Discussion (40 mins.)

Full webinar video is below.

MTTF Resources: