Saturday, February 18, 2006

KY House OKs nurse prescriptions

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) -- Advanced registered nurse practitioners could prescribe patients medicines, including potentially addictive prescription drugs, under a plan the House passed Friday.

Nurse practitioners could write patients limited prescriptions for drugs such as painkillers, which include OxyContin, morphine and methadone. In some instances, patients could only receive three days' worth of the prescription medication.

Proponents say the bill would help lower Kentucky's Medicaid costs by decreasing the load on emergency rooms across the state. It would also help patients living in the state's rural areas where in some cases there are fewer doctors, proponents say.

I can think of a few rural locations right off the top of my head that do not have access to an MD but do have a Nurse Practitioners. I can honestly say I know several who I would take over and MD hands down. Most ER's have Nurse Practitioners now because they can't staff enough MD's for the non emergent patients.

Of course not everyone is happy:

Still, Rep. Howard Cornett, R-Whitesburg, held up four pages containing the names of drugs nurse practitioners would be allowed to give patients. Cornett said his eastern Kentucky district is fighting a drug epidemic and allowing more availability of potentially addictive medications would worsen the situation.

"Let's not make any more drug addicts than we already have," Cornett said.

So Howard is that the same Eastern KY that is in short supply of MD's? I could see why if I could work anywhere in the state I would want to locate my practice in Eastern KY where people try to pay their bills with livestock. You think MD's don't already hand out scripts for Lortab like its Skittles? So the failing war on drugs means more to you than available health care?

No comments: