Celebrate National Nurse Practitioner Week!

Nurse practitioners (NPs) can be an invaluable asset to your rheumatology practice. That’s why National Nurse Practitioner Week is held annually to celebrate these exceptional health care providers. It’s also an opportunity to remind state lawmakers of the importance of changing outdated regulations so NPs are able to practice to the fullest extent of their experience and education. This year, National Nurse Practitioner Week takes place November 13th through 19th.

According to the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, there are more than 222,000 nurse practitioners licensed in the US. 96.2% of these NPs have graduate degrees, and 83.4% are certified in an area of primary care. The average NP has been practicing for 12 years, which means that in addition to being well-educated they’re also very experienced!

One of the greatest challenges that nurse practitioners face is public perception. Many patients don’t realize that the person treating them is an NP. Other times, they don’t realize the scope of practice and high level of care an NP can offer them.

When it comes to Rheumatology in particular, there are two organizations which cater to the advancement of Nurse Practitioner careers: Rheumatology Nurses Society and ACR’s Association of Rheumatology Health Professionals.  Both organizations offer resources and educational opportunities for Nurse Practitioners to hone their craft.  Visit their websites for more information.

Below are some other ways you can spread the word about NPs and honor those who help make your practice a success.

  1. Write a letter to the editor about your amazing NPs. Send your letter to local newspaper and magazine editors so it coincides with National Nurse Practitioner Week. Make sure your letter is concise, interesting, and accurate, and include your contact information.
  2. Join the conversation on social media. Use the hashtag #NPWeek on Twitter and Facebook to tag your posts and see what others are saying. Share links, stories, and praise for your NPs!
  3. Share information on your Facebook page. The American Association of Nurse Practitioners offers this sample text—edit and adapt as needed! “Happy National Nurse Practitioner Week! Did you know that nurse practitioners offer 222,000 solutions to strengthening health care for America? NPs are the health care providers of choice for millions of Americans each year, thanks to the high-quality, patient-centered primary, acute and specialty care they provide. NPs order, perform and interpret diagnostic tests and can prescribe medication and other treatments. Learn more about NPs and the services they provide at http://aanp.org. Locate an NP in your area at http://npfinder.com. #NPWeek”
  4. Contact local media and ask them to run a public service announcement. Local print, television, and radio stations will often share community information for no fee. To make it easy for them and to ensure your message is heard, provide audio or written copy. You can also find volunteer willing to serve as guests on a local talk show to spread the word about NPs.
  5. Host a party! No celebratory week is complete without a party! Plan a special reception with other NP groups in your area to recognize the good works of nurse practitioners. You can co-host with a larger group of health care providers in a collaborative event, or you can keep the party within your practice, giving your NPs a catered lunch and gift cards to their favorite coffee shops.

Nurse Practitioners Week is the perfect opportunity to share all the great things NPs do in your community and at your practice. Don’t let it pass by without showing your NPs how grateful you are for their service!

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  • As a speaker at the first ad hoc meeting of rheumatology practice managers gathered in a single small room at its infancy a decade ago, I’m amazed to see how NORM has blossomed into a high energy organization of depth and professional meetings with parallel break-out symposia between plenary sessions. NORM has truly come of age. This is where the “business” of rheumatology gets learned. The ”guildmanship” for rheumatology practice management is now strong.- Paul H. Caldron, DO, FACP, FACR, MBA, Arizona Arthritis and Rheumatology Associates
  • In a time of demanding changes in the management of medical practices in the US, NORM has been a lifesaver to the community of Rheumatology practices.  NORM has allowed our practice to stay ahead of the many demands of CMS and others payors and has ensured that our practice remains cognizant of new issues that arise in HIPPA compliance, human resources and medical billing to name a few. Sending our Practice Manager to NORM's conferences has been cost-effective and beneficial to our practice because she returns to our office with an abundance of information that otherwise would have taken months to compile. Every Rheumatology practice that wishes to stay on top of emerging issues in practice management should consider sending a member of their staff to NORM's conference.- Michael S. Rosen M.D., Chester County Rheumatology PC
  • Thanks to all those wonderful people in the NORM Network who respond to emails, offering their advice, experience, time, and support ... I haven't even been a member a full year yet and I am amazed at the dedication of everyone who responds to helping via emails and the NORM Organization itself! I have barely had a chance to explore the resources and I have yet to really dive into requests for help still I am silently learning so much and do occasionally offer what I can! Thank you all!- Cheryl Piambino, Kenneth E. Bresky, DO

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