Bill Could Allow Nurses To Treat Patients Without Doctor - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Bill Could Allow Nurses To Treat Patients Without Doctor

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LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) - Doctors and nurses are normally on the same side of medical issues that come up in politics, but a bill making its way through the Michigan Senate would allow advanced nurses to essentially treat patients without having a doctor or physician supervising them.


With the Affordable Care Act and a statewide Medicaid expansion set to kick in next year, medical experts expect to see more patients seeking care.

"These patients are going to have nowhere to go because it's going to be hard for them to get in to see anyone," said Debra Nault, with the Michigan Nurses Association.

Nault says she supports Senate Bill II, which would allow advanced nurses to treat patients without supervision from a doctor or physician, something Nault says those nurses are qualified to do.

The Nurses Association says the bill doesn't give nurses any new authority they didn't have before, but the state's Medical Society says even advanced nurses aren't qualified to do the work doctors do.@

Dr. Kenneth Elmassian says nurses shouldn't treat, diagnose or write prescriptions without a doctor, something the bill would allow.


"It would allow them to practice medicine with a nurses education," said Dr. Elmassian, the president of Michigan's Medical Society.

Elmassian says creating a two-tier system where some have access to doctors and others to nurse practitioners isn't a solution to a growing volume of patients.




6 News also spoke with the Michigan Senator who sponsored the bill. He says 18 states and Washington D.C. already allow advanced nurses to treat patients without a doctor's supervision.

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