Showing posts relating to: The Courtroom: Legal Spotlight

Second Jobs? Side Hustles? What NPs Need to Know

By Jennifer Lankford, Labor and Employment Attorney 

Moonlighting. Daylighting. Side Hustle. No matter how you describe it, second jobs or passions turned profits are common among nurse practitioners. Given the unique work hours of many NPs, you may have downtime that can be used to pick up nursing work for another health care provider, or, as is becoming more and more common, to pursue an entirely different career. Before signing on for a second job or promoting your Etsy shop among co-workers and on social media, here are some tips to keep in mind.

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Do You Need Your Own Medical Malpractice Insurance?

While none of us as nurse practitioners intentionally messes up, the reality is that our role comes with a high level of responsibility. Misjudgments or mishaps can potentially lead to harm. Failure to document decision making can come back to bite you. So, as healthcare providers, we protect ourselves by purchasing liability coverage. Most often, such coverage is purchased for us by our employers. Lately, I have received a number of questions from nurse practitioners asking if they need to purchase their own supplemental policies as well. 

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How Many Nurse Practitioners Can a Physician Supervise?

Not all states require that nurse practitioners "collaborate with" or are "supervised by" physicians. While 33 states and DC allow nurse practitioners to diagnose and treat patients autonomously, 18 states still require physician oversight for nurse practitioners to engage in patient care. In addition to this overarching oversight requirement, most states include a handful of additional stipulations as to what this oversight looks like. One of these limitations can be the number of nurse practitioners that a physician is allowed to supervise or collaborate with at one time. 

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Compensation Concerns: How Do You Know if Your Job Offer is Fair?

When a NP or PA receives a job offer, there are many aspects of the employment relationship that must be carefully analyzed. But let’s be honest, compensation is always at the top of everyone’s mind. In fact, it’s not uncommon for job candidates to flip through the beginning of their offered contract, and get right to the payment section to see what has been offered. And we don’t blame you! Beyond the initial excitement and curiosity about compensation, a common fear we hear from many of our clients is: “I don’t want to sound greedy, but do you think this employer has offered me a fair compensation structure? Are they offering me enough?”

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Should NPs Sell MLM Health and Wellness Products?

With a record breaking 20.5 million people in the United States involved in direct sales in 2016, chances are that you’ve probably been targeted a time or two by a well-meaning Facebook friend who tried to sell you a so-called life changing product from a multi-level marketing company they represent. 

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Can a FNP Work in Psych?

There’s a lot of gray area surrounding specialties for nurse practitioners. Unlike physicians, who study very specific areas of medicine, as NPs our specialties are pretty general. ‘Acute Care’ and ‘Family’ are about as specific as it gets for us in most educational institutions. Instead, we hone our areas in practice on the job with training from an employer.

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How Nurse Practitioners Can Get Their Personal Contact Info Offline

A nurse practitioner I spoke with recently had a question about her NPI number. So, she searched online for her name + NPI. She was appalled to find that her personal address and cell phone were listed, plainly visible and available to the public, along with her NPI number and license numbers. 

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Maternity and Paternity Leave for Nurse Practitioners? What You Need to Know

By Labor and Employment Attorney Jennifer Lankford

Welcoming a new member to your family is an exciting time! Unfortunately, I see all too often how excitement gives way to anxiety as moms and dads to be begin to worry about returning to work after baby.  Once the daycare arrangements are made and a copy of “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” lands soundly on the nightstand, the next call is to me – “What maternity leave am I entitled to? 

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Critical Advice for NPs Who Delegate to Medical Assistants

Thanks to the predicted surge in the number of medical offices and outpatient care facilities, technological advancements and the growing number of elderly Americans in need of medical treatment, the medical assistant profession is growing much faster than the average for all occupations according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics. For nurse practitioners, properly utilizing medical assistants in your clinical setting can certainly make your day run much more efficiently. While these healthcare workers are quite versatile, misunderstanding their role and what can be delegated to them may cause you to violate your state’s rules and regulations.

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Life for Nurse Practitioners in Guam Just Got Even Better

If Surf, Sand and Sun Wasn't Enough...

As a nurse practitioner, I've long fantasized about taking my career somewhere warm and sunny, or just plain different. NPs enjoy the flexibility to practice all over our country and its territories. Some of these locations prove much friendlier than others when it comes to the logistics of employment. Guam has just joined the group of locations that rank most favorable for NPs. 

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Can Nurse Practitioners Text Patient Care Orders?

Have you ever texted about a patient? In the emergency department where I work, texting can be an easy way to consult with a specialist or send an image of a patient's X-ray, lab results or even chief complaint. But, is this legal? What are the implications of texting about patient care?

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Are Preceptors Liable for the Actions of Nurse Practitioner Students?

We've all experienced the awkwardness of clinical learning as nurse practitioner students. Mastering the skill set required to work as an NP means practicing on real, live patients even before you are considered proficient at that skill. Anxious, you stutter and sweat as you explain the procedure to the patient, the more experienced eye (hopefully!) of your preceptor looking over your shoulder. 

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