The March 11 Point of View “One answer to doctor shortage” by Debbie Varnum was on target and timely.
Many North Carolinians, even those with insurance, can’t get preventive health care or early management of chronic illnesses because they live in a health care provider shortage area. Why should geography limit health care options?
The UNC system educates hundreds of nurse practitioners each year, only to have their ability to care for our neediest residents unnecessarily restricted. Tax dollars are poorly invested when graduates of our public university system are prevented from doing everything they are educated to do, where they are most needed to do it.
Not only can our state do the right thing for health care access by lifting the supervision requirement, it won’t affect the budget since the necessary regulatory infrastructure is already in place and self-financed.
It is time for North Carolina to fully deploy this ready, willing and extremely able primary care workforce. I am optimistic that SB 695/HB 807 will be passed during the upcoming short session. North Carolinians deserve unrestricted access to nurse practitioner care!
State Rep. Gale Adcock
The writer, a Democrat, represents N.C. District 41. She is also a family nurse practitioner.