2017's Must-Read Legal Posts for Nurse Practitioners

While thinking about the legal implications of our work as nurse practitioners isn't always enjoyable, it is a necessary part of our profession. From scope of practice to employment issues and medical malpractice, there are a number of ways the law factors in to our careers. Legal reads are pretty popular here at MidlevelU. Here are the top picks this year. 

<--break->1. Do You Need Your Own Medical Malprctice Insurance? 

In an ideal world, healthcare providers would all be over-insured, practicing with the reassurance of complete financial backup should anything go wrong. In reality, however, medical malpractice insurance can be a significant expense and has limits. Carrying supplemental personal coverage outside of one's employer is costly and the benefits of doing so must be carefully considered. Continue reading...

2. Advice for Taking Call That Will Save Your Nurse Practitioner License 

Call responsibilities are an extension of practice for many nurse practitioners. As such, they must be taken just as seriously as in-person patient interactions. Providing care at a distance comes with the potential for misjudgment and miscommunication, so it's important for nurse practitioners to have best practices in place to guide this aspect of their careers. How do you reduce the liability that comes with taking call and ensure the best possible care for your patients? Continue reading...

3. Quality vs. Quantity: What Should I Expect in a NP Contract?

“Is it usual for my contract to be this short?”, “Are employment agreements normally this long?” I receive these types of questions often from nurse practitioners who are presented with an employment agreement. My answer, “It is the quality, not the quantity, of the agreement that matters.” Sometimes a short and sweet agreement is all that is needed. Continue reading...

4. NPs, Are You Complying With This Reporting Law? 

Every state has a reportable disease list, and health care providers including nurse practitioners are required by law to report these diseases. Yes, that’s right by law. That’s because when these diseases are not reported, delayed, or incomplete, new incidences of the disease can occur and spread in your community. Here’s how it works and why it’s important. Continue reading...

5. Second Jobs? Side Hustles? What NPs Need to Know 

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. Continue reading...

6. 7 Questions to Ask about Your State Prescription Drug Monitoring Program

Do you look patients up on your state's controlled substance monitoring database before writing prescriptions for these medications? I've long been aware of this resource available to nurse practitioners and other prescribers, however I recently learned that there's a lot more to using these databases than most providers are aware of. Did you know that it may be illegal for you to print out the results of an inquiry into the system? Or, for example, that you may be legally obligated to look a patient up in your state's database before writing certain prescriptions? Continue reading...

7. Collaboration vs. Supervision: Understanding NP Scope of Practice 

In many states, some kind of physician oversight is required for NPs. Some refer to this relationship as 'collaboration' and others to the relationship as 'supervision'. As a nurse practitioner, I've always wondered about the technical differences between scope of practice regulations in states with 'collaboration' versus those with 'supervision'. Continue reading...