MSSNY Pushes Doc ID Bill

The Medical Society of the State of New York has hired extra public relations help, signing a three-month agreement with an outside consultant in addition to its regular staff. At the top of its agenda is a pending bill (S5493/A7889) sponsored by state Sen. Joseph Griffo, R-Utica, and Assemblyman Al Stirpe, D-Syracuse. The bill would make it clear to patients when their health care providers are physicians—not less-trained professionals. Known as the Healthcare Professional Transparency Act, the measure would require workers who come in contact with patients to wear an ID tag that specifies what kind of license he or she has. The bill would also cover medical advertising. “Ambiguous provider nomenclature, related advertisements and marketing and the myriad of individuals one encounters in each point of service exacerbate patient uncertainty,” the bill reads in part. According to MSSNY, an AMA survey found that 54% of patients believe optometrists are medical doctors, 35% believe a nurse with a Ph.D. is a physician, and 44% say they have trouble learning which of their caregivers are M.D.s.

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“Nurse Practitioners Are Worthy Professionals … but They Are Not Doctors.”

The New York Times op-ed noted “EARLIER this month, the New York State Legislature passed a bill granting nurse practitioners the right to provide primary care without physician oversight. New York joins 16 other states and the District of Columbia in awarding such autonomy. (Most states still require nurse practitioners to work with physicians under a written practice agreement.) The bill’s authors contend that mandatory collaboration with a physician “no longer serves a clinical purpose” and reduces much-needed access to primary care.”

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Nurse Practitioners in NY Will No Longer Need to Be Formally Tethered to a Physician

An article in Modern Healthcare explained the change.

“The Nurse Practitioners Modernization Act was introduced last year and was included in the state budget … The law will allow NPs with more than 3,600 hours of experience to practice without a written practice agreement with a supervising physician. It does not expand NPs’ scope of practice or allow them to provide additional services, according to the 3,500-member Nurse Practitioner Association New York State.”

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Better Hygiene Through Humiliation

Recently The Atlantic reported: “As doctors and nurses move through hospitals, they aren’t the only ones making rounds—hitching a ride on their hands are dangerous bacteria that can lead to infections ranging from antibiotic-resistant staph to norovirus.”

“In recent years, a number of companies have designed systems that aim to nudge doctors and nurses into washing their hands regularly. One of these devices, a badge made by Biovigil, aims to exploit a very powerful emotion: shame. When a doctor enters an exam room, the badge chirps and a light on it turns yellow—a reminder to the doctor as well as an alert to the patient that he is about to be touched by someone with unclean hands. If the doctor doesn’t wash her hands, the light flashes red and the badge makes a disapproving noise. After the doctor waves a freshly sanitized hand in front of the badge, alcohol vapors trigger a sensor that changes the light from red to green.”

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“What Personal Care Hospitalized Patients Now Get Is Mostly From Nurses.”

“When nursing is not optimal, patient care is never good.”

It’s always interesting and illuminating what we learn from physicians who report on their experiences as hosptalized patients.

The New York Times article reported about the hospitalization experience of a legendary physician.

“Last June, the month he turned 90, Dr. Arnold S. Relman, the eminent former medical educator and editor, fell down a flight of stairs at his home in Cambridge, Mass. He cracked his skull and broke three vertebrae in his neck and more bones in his face.”

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A New York Times Tribute to Nurse Sylvie Jacobs

Sylvie Jacobs, BSN, RN, CPAN, a post-anesthesia care unit (PACU) nurse at The Mount Sinai Hospital, recently was honored with the prestigious New York Times Tribute to Nurses Award for her leadership and commitment to excellence in clinical care.

Ms. Jacobs, who has been a Mount Sinai nurse for 34 years, and has worked in the PACU since 1987, serves as a Magnet Champion, co-chair of the Perioperative Professional Practice Committee Council, and editor of The Mount Sinai Hospital Magnet Newsletter for nurses.

Recently, Ms. Jacobs participated in a Qualitative Research Project to help PACU nurses improve their skills in conflict resolution. She also was instrumental in developing an educational tool that helps novice nurses determine if patients are ready for discharge.

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