NP or PA?

  1. What is the difference between a Nurse Practitioner and a Physicians Assistant? I wondered if they are similar because Stanford was offering a program for both of them (they just cancelled the NP program) (
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  2. 2 Comments

  3. by   core0
    Quote from ginillel
    What is the difference between a Nurse Practitioner and a Physicians Assistant? I wondered if they are similar because Stanford was offering a program for both of them (they just cancelled the NP program) (
    You will probably find more information in the NP section. There are 2 threads here:
    http://allnurses.com/forums/f34/diff...pa-164046.html
    and here
    http://allnurses.com/forums/f34/clin...pas-83016.html

    Note both these threads are long and one was started in 2004. It would help to read the whole thing before commenting.

    The PA perspective can be found here:
    http://www.physicianassistantforum.com
    The site is having server problems so it may be hard to log on to. If you do a search for NP you will find a fair bit of information.

    The long and the short of it is that both NPs and PAs are licensed providers who provide similar care. The primary difference is in scope of practice. The NP scope of practice is defined by the nursing domain which can be quite broad - ACNP or quite narrow - WHNP. The PA scope of practice is derived from the supervising physician. Essentially the PA cannot do what the physician cannot do. Of course individual states have different restrictions on the scope. The difference in scope leads to different practice demographics. There are many more PAs than NPs in surgery and there are more NPs than PAs in OB for example.

    For your information UC Davis continues to offer a dual PA/NP program (you have to do an extra semester of nursing courses for the NP).

    David Carpenter, PA-C
  4. by   oldiebutgoodie
    Go to the Specialty forums, Advance Practice Nursing section. In the stickies, there is a whole thread explaining the differences.

    Oldiebutgoodie

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