New report studies use of nurse practitioners and physician assistants

19 August 2013

A new MSFHR-funded report provides an evidence-based review of how various health professionals and organizations can work together to provide the best possible care to British Columbians. The report was commissioned by the BC Nursing Research Initiative and responds to nine questions asked by MSFHR’s Nursing Research Advisory Council.

The report, authored by UBC researchers Sabrina Wong and Vicki Farrally, recognizes that BC has made considerable investment and progress towards introducing nurse practitioners into the health system. The authors advise that further collaboration is needed between government, health professionals, and health authorities to fully realize the potential of nurse practitioners.

The report finds strong evidence that physician assistants could improve productivity and efficiency by substituting for some physician duties. However, major consideration of their roles and impact on the health system is still required before physician assistants become regulated and implemented in BC.

It is important to note that MSFHR does not take a stance on the report’s conclusions. As noted in the report: The results and conclusions are those of the authors and no official endorsement by the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research is intended or should be inferred.