National Nurse Practitioner Week is November 13-19 this year, marking 51 years that NPs have provided proven, expert, patient-centered health care across the country.
Nurse practitioners focus not only on diagnosing and managing acute and chronic illnesses, but also on integrating health promotion, disease prevention, counseling and education. Many nurse practitioners have doctoral degrees as well as advanced education and clinical training, allowing them to apply a holistic view as they treat and teach people of all backgrounds.
Just a Few Reasons to Say Thanks to NPs:
Nurse practitioners have been in practice an average of 11 years, most seeing three or more patients per hour. In total, more than 870 million patient visits are made to NPs each year.
Patients whose primary care providers are NPs have fewer emergency room visits and shorter hospital stays, leading to lower out-of-pocket costs.
With approximately 222,000 NPs currently licensed in the U.S. (and approximately 20,000 new NPs graduated into the workforce over the past year), NPs continue to be an effective solution to our nation’s health care provider crisis.
From: AANP’s 2016 NP Week Resource Guide: http://assets.aanp.org/documents/2016/NPWeek2016ResourceGuide.pdf
Despite being the provider of choice for millions of Americans, nurse practitioners are not granted full practice authority in every state. The primary, acute and specialty care services that NPs offer are needed by veterans and an aging population, and two out of three patients support legislation that would expand access.
NP Week—The Perfect Time to Spread the Word
With 21 states and the District of Columbia already giving patients direct access to nurse practitioner care, NP Week is another way to demonstrate the benefit of all states having access. More states will be reviewing access legislation during 2017, and you can help deliver the message to the general public and lawmakers about the benefits of NP-delivered health care.
From a simple shout-out to a larger gathering, there’s no wrong way to celebrate NPs! Here are 3 ideas to get you started:
1. Join #NPWeek Social Buzz.
Social media offers a quick, effective way to share support for nurse practitioners with your circles throughout NP Week. Post, like and share messages in celebration of NPs, such as facts and reasons to appreciate the role they play in advancing health care. Use the hashtag #NPWeek in your tweets and Instagram posts, and change your profile picture or cover photo on Facebook.
2. Host an Event.
This can be as simple as streaming a short video on Facebook Live, or as involved as organizing your practice or local/state NP group to co-sponsor a community event, like a health fair or fun run. You can use these events to highlight the accomplishments of NPs, showcase stand-out NPs in your practice or community, advocate for legislation that reduces barriers to NP practice, and so on.
3. Contact the Local News.
Request local media run a PSA, or write a letter to the editor of your community paper sharing the virtues of the variety of services provided by NPs.
Nurse Practitioner Week provides the perfect platform to advance conversations about the critical role NPs play in narrowing gaps in health care, providing high-quality, affordable services, and improving outcomes for patients.
Be sure to observe NP Week with us November 13-19, and thank an NP!