The NP Perspective

I think I took for granted how well the clinic in Virginia treated me in general. Working in their Florida clinic, I noticed they didn’t treat nurse practitioners as well. For example, nurse practitioners should only be seeing about 12-15 patients per day with this complex geriatric population. However, the nurse practitioners here were scheduled about 20 patients per day. Often seeing more patient than even the physicians.

Those of us without a patient panel, are not allotted the usual 40 min patients for “new” patients (new to us but not new to the clinic). When we are unfamiliar with a patient we can easily take 10 minutes just for chart review. So with only a 20 minute appointment, that leaves us a mere 10 min to address a patient with over a dozen disorders, while also working on health maintenance. Remember this practice is all about having good patient outcomes. Thus, having a brief 10 min visit with a complex patient doesn’t equal good outcomes.

We have approached the front desk requesting they provide us with the allotted time for these new patients, but it’s like speaking to deaf ears. I like to be thorough and even though I have 20 minute appointments for new patients, I usually go beyond this time. The problem is, the front desk books back to back patients, so if I go beyond the allotted time then that means my next patients are waiting forever. In order to be efficient, I often have to catch up on my documentation at the end of the day, or skip a lunch. This isn’t what I signed up for…..

Moreover, when a patient calls requesting a same day appointment due to an acute issue, the front desk will tell them “your doctor is full so you’ll just have to see a nurse practitioner”. The way they say this implicates that you can’t see your PCP but you’ll see the next best thing. I think it would be better if they said “your PCP’s schedule is full so you may have to see another provider.”

Another odd thing is instead of calling us by our first or last name (Sophia vs Ms. Khawly), they call us Nurse Khawly… It’s weird because I wasn’t even called that when I worked in a hospital or school setting as an RN or LPN.

The patients also have a poor attitude towards nurse practitioners. Sometimes they will straight up tell us “I haven’t seen a doctor the whole time I have been here. I saw John last time and now I am seeing you”. As if it’s such a bad thing…

I have been trying to get the other nurse practitioners to stand up for themselves as well, but it recently caused some out lash by the medical director.

Will this experience encourage me or deter me from accepting a permanent traveling gig from this company? Only time will tell…..

Anyone experience poor treatment in a work setting as a nurse practitioner vs the physicians?



2 thoughts on “The NP Perspective

  1. Yes ! I moved from MD to FL and I have noticed a huge NP culture change – I was respected That’s part of the medical community in Maryland but in Florida I feel like I am second fiddle – I am here because of the weather and family or else I wouldn’t be here practicing because it is very discouraging

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