Professor makes reform suggestions at White House health care meeting

Mona Counts, Elouise Ross Eberly Professor in the School of Nursing, visited the White House on Thursday, July 2, to participate in a health care discussion with Nancy-Ann DeParle, director of the White House Office of Health Reform, and Kavita Patel, a member of the Office of Public Engagement. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss solutions to problems plaguing primary care. Counts was part of the nurse practitioner contingent, along with high-ranking members of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and representatives from medicine, dentistry, and psychology.

Counts said current barriers limit the types of care nurse practitioners can provide. Nurse practitioners’ scope of practices does allow for them to provide all of the primary care services, though several insurance companies still do not recognize them. These barriers, Counts said, hinder the possibility of capitalizing on the country’s entire population of licensed health care professionals, including 126,000 nurse practitioners. She suggested at the meeting that “anyone who is trained to deliver health care should be utilized to their full capability.”

Counts said it was “very exciting” to attend such an important meeting. She said that President Barack Obama deserves credit for “putting together a team of health care professionals that is making a huge effort to address the issues.”

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Last Updated November 18, 2010