Mid-level providers like nurse practitioners (NP) are being utilized more and more. According to a report from the nation’s leading provider search firm Merritt Hawkins, “the NP workforce in the US has grown rapidly in recent years. Today, the number of NPs completing their training programs each year exceeds the number of medical residents in all specialties who complete physician training.”

These so-called “convenient care” sites such as urgent care centers, retail clinics, and telemedicine are largely staffed by NP and physician assistants (PA) which is likely driving this demand. There are now 26 states in which NPs can practice independently of physicians.  According to the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP):

  • 88.9% of NPs are certified in primary care.
  • 81.0% of full-time NPs see Medicare patients.
  • 42.5% of full-time NPs hold hospital privileges.
  • 96.2% of NPS prescribe medications, and those in full-time practice write an average of 21 prescriptions per day.
  • The majority of full-time NPs (59.4%) see three or more patients per hour.
  • On average, NPs have 11 years of practice experience.
  • The average age of NPs is 49 years.