ACT GPs fight to overturn nurse practitioner approval
PRESSURE from GPs in the ACT has led to an agreement from ACT Health to review the process that led to the approval of five pharmacy-based nurse practitioner positions in the territory.
Local division of general practice chair Dr Rashmi Sharma last week met with ACT Health about GP concerns that approval of the positions for a planned Revive Clinic lacked consultation with two large GP practices near the planned site.
"We understand ACT Health has put in motion an internal process to consider our concerns," Dr Sharma told Medical Observer.
"The process for patient information flows between Revive and regular treating GPs is our primary concern.
"ACT Health approval was granted prior to the Revive Clinic consulting local health providers on the patient care model."
Revive managing director Louise Stewart has previously dismissed the division’s concerns, saying her company had consulted one local Tuggeranong practice regarding collaborative arrangements with GPs and had met strict ACT Health requirements (Medical Observer, 29 January).
While refusing to comment on the review, ACT Health stood by its approval process.
Meanwhile, Federal Health Minister Nicola Roxon has called on Coalition senators to back the Midwives and Nurse Practitioners Bill, which will provide MBS and PBS access to nurse practitioners.
Ms Roxon’s call follows the recommendation of the Senate Community Affairs Legislation Committee that the Bill be passed in its current form.
While backing the Bill, Coalition Senators on the committee said they would keep close watch on the collaborative arrangements between nurse practitioners, midwives and medical practitioners.