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JAAPA. 2015 Sep;28(9):46-53. doi: 10.1097/01.JAA.0000470436.69199.45.

In which states are physician assistants or nurse practitioners more likely to work in primary care?

Author information

1
Esther Hing is a survey statistician with the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics, Division of Health Care Statistics, in Hyattsville, Md. At the time this study was done, Chun-Ju Hsiao was a health scientist at the National Center for Health Statistics. He now is a health scientist administrator with the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's Center for Quality Improvement and Patient Safety in Rockville, Md. The findings and conclusions in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the CDC the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Examine availability of physician assistants (PAs) or nurse practitioners (NPs) in primary care physician practices by state and by state PA and NP scope-of-practice laws.

METHODS:

Availability of PAs and NPs in primary care practices was examined in multivariate analysis using a 2012 state-based, nationally representative survey of office-based physicians. Covariates included practice characteristics, state, and in a separate model, PA and NP scope-of-practice variables.

RESULTS:

After controlling for practice characteristics, higher use of PAs and NPs was found in three states (Minnesota, Montana, and South Dakota). In a separate model, higher use of PAs or NPs was associated with favorable PA scope-of-practice laws, but not with NP scope-of-practice laws.

CONCLUSIONS:

Higher availability of PAs or NPs was associated with favorable PA scope-of-practice laws. Lack of association between PA or NP availability and NP scope-of-practice laws requires further investigation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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