HM17 session summary: Nurse Practitioner/Physician Assistant special interest forum



Tracy Cardin, ACNP, SFHM ; Emilie Thornhill, PA-C

Session summary

The Nurse Practitioner and Physician Assistant (NP/PA) special interest forum at HM17 drew more than 60 providers, including NPs, PAs, and physicians.

Emilie Thornhill, a certified PA and chair of the NP/PA Committee, and Tracy Cardin, SHM board member, updated the attendees regarding the work of the NP/PA committee over the last year. The committee has created a comprehensive “NP/PA Toolkit,” which was developed over the last 2 years in response to common inquiries about deployment and integration of NPs and PAs into Hospital Medicine practice groups.

Nicolas Houghton

Nicolas Houghton

The Toolkit includes best practices regarding recruitment, interviewing, retention, orientation and onboarding, models of care, billing and reimbursement, and program evaluation, as well as links to additional resources. The Toolkit will be posted, free of charge to SHM members, as a living document on the SHM website in the near future and will be maintained frequently by the NP/PA Committee.

The committee has also developed several goals for the coming year, including an “Optimization and Implementation Project,” intended to positively impact the shallow supply of highly-skilled and experienced HM NPs and PAs through development of partnerships, new content, and use of existing resources to provide a platform for effective workforce training and on-boarding.

The second half of the session was utilized to hear SHM member feedback and to solicit ideas for meaningful work that the committee could accomplish in order to better serve the SHM community. Members used the time to share and describe practice pattern variations and common shared challenges. Project suggestions included:

  • Benchmarking Surveys related to NP/PA burnout, including aspects of protected time, engagement, and workload; scheduling and deployment models; and NP/PA designation as faculty or staff.
  • Increased utilization and engagement with HMX as a platform for sharing ideas and success stories to increase HM NP/PA visibility.
  • Creation of a “Bizarre Bylaws Blog” to disseminate best practices and improve hospital bylaws through innovative storytelling of antiquated bylaws.
  • Improved NP and PA participation and engagement with local chapters.

Key takeaways for HM

  • An NP/PA Toolkit resource to be posted on the SHM website.
  • The NP/PA committee will transition to a Special Interest Group over the next year.
  • Hospital Medicine Exchange (HMX) engagement and participation are encouraged.
  • An “Implementation and Optimization Project” to help improve workforce development is pending for the coming year.

Nicolas Houghton is an NP hospitalist in Cleveland and an editorial board member of The Hospitalist.

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