On being replaced

The reason that nurse practitioners are replacing physicians

is the same reason that registered nurses are replacing nurse practitioners

is the same reason that practical nurses are replacing registered nurses.  

As restrictions lift and scope of practice widens, whoever is cheaper to do the job will be picked. This is especially true when our jobs can be defined and written down.

As a primary health care nurse practitioner, I do not have the same education as a family physician, and I don’t need to in order to do the job. I’m not performing surgeries, delivering babies or treating end-stage renal failure as an NP. And neither are many family physicians.

Practical nurses don’t have the same education as registered nurses, and don’t need to in order do to the same job either.

Before we get upset about being replaced, there are 3 things we need to remember:

  1. Learning doesn’t stop when school is over. Just because we didn’t learn something in school doesn’t mean we can’t learn something in order to do our job.
  2. Infinite information is available to anyone with an internet connection. What was once taught only in medical school or in a BScN program is now instantly available to anyone who needs to learn it or access it to do their job.
  3. What we’re taught in school isn’t the same as what we need to know and be able to do for our jobs.

If you don’t want to be cheaper and replaceable then your only option is to be better –  to do important work, to take initiative, to innovate, to create new jobs and meet un-met needs. These are far more valuable qualities than being obedient and cheap.