The nurse practitioner will see you now: U of M set to open nurse-only clinic

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We might be hearing, "The nurse practitioner will see you now," more often since a new state law removed the doctor oversight hurdle nurse practitioners faced in the past.

As nurse practitioners take the reins, the University of Minnesota will open its Nurse Practitioner Clinic on April 6, just a block from the new Vikings stadium, The Journal reports.

This is one of the first nurse-run clinics to open in the region since a law that allows nurses who are midwives, practitioners, clinical specialists and anesthetists to practice without a physician's supervision went into effect Jan. 1.

The Nurse Practitioner Clinic plans to treat short-term illness and chronic diseases, and it could add mental health services, the Minnesota Daily reports. The clinic is being geared towards low-income patients through a partnership with a transitional housing facility, Emanuel Housing, located in the same building, MPR reports.

The U of M's School of Nursing will operate the clinic in collaboration with the college's health specialists, the clinic's website says, so if a patient needs to see a doctor, they will be referred to the university's specialists.

Easing the physician shortage

The clinic's model reflects a movement for getting creative with healthcare as a shortage of primary care providers looms across the state.

Supporters of nurse-run clinics expect them to help with this shortage, MPR reports. Though, the state doctor group Minnesota Medical Association is "skeptical" this kind of clinic will address the issue, according to the Star Tribune,

Minnesota is the 19th state to make this adopt this legislation, the newspaper notes.

A report for the Legislative Health Care Workforce Commission found 27 percent of Minnesota primary care providers are nurse practitioners.

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