Journal of Rural Health Releases Article Promoting Healthcare Teams

Submitted on Mon, 05/12/2014 - 14:19

The majority of family physicians work with Nurse Practitioners (NPs), Physician Assistants (PAs), and Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs) in clinical practice. A recent article in the Journal of Rural Health emphasizes how a team-based approach is at the root of patient-centered care and should be expanded to ensure further high-quality care across the country.  The structure of the American healthcare system is changing with the growing demand for primary care services. There are an increased number of insured patients across the country due to the Affordable Care Act, and policy makers are interested in building teams of providers who can accommodate for the growing demand of family care across the country.

Along with family physicians, NPs, PAs, and CNMs help deliver primary care, especially in rural areas. With more insured Americans, there will be more physician visits, thus, requiring more physicians to care for the public. Also, longer lifespans and an aging population will require more healthcare professionals. The authors used a sample of physicians from the American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM) database and collected data to determine if physicians work with NPs, PAs, and CNMs. The findings show that the number of primary care physicians working with NPs, PAs, and CNMs continues to increase, which may improve healthcare, especially in rural areas.

The second largest medical specialty board in the United States, the American Board of Family Medicine was founded in 1969 and is a voluntary, private, not-for-profit organization.  The ABFM strives to establish and maintain standards of excellence in the specialty of Family Medicine and works to improve medical education in the field by determining the fitness of physicians who apply for and hold certificates.