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Nurse Practitioners Propose New Primary Health Care Model for B.C.

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Dec. 5, 2016) - The BC Nurse Practitioner Association (BCNPA) has developed a comprehensive plan to more fully integrate nurse practitioners (NP) into the provincial health care system with the launch of a transformative new model for primary health care, BCNPA President Kathleen Fyvie announced today.

"After more than ten years of nurse practitioners in B.C., NPs are still struggling to fit into the healthcare system in a way that can provide the best access and outcomes for British Columbians," said Fyvie. "We recognize that this is a complex situation, and have taken the initiative to bring together some of B.C.'s leading NP researchers and policymakers to develop a plan that will provide government with clear direction on how to effectively and efficiently make better use of NPs throughout the province."

Primary Care Transformation in British Columbia: A New Model to Integrate Nurse Practitioners is a collaborative document which pulls together current research, relevant models and innovative new ideas, to introduce a uniquely B.C. solution which will ensure all British Columbians can access NPs as primary care providers, and launch a number of flexible options for communities, clinics and health authorities who want to make better use of these highly skilled professionals.

Recognizing that existing fee-for-service options are prohibitive to NP practice and comprehensive team based care, the plan proposes two distinct funding models, with accompanying examples and case studies, to guide the work and help provide health system planners with concrete solutions for integrating NPs in B.C. In addition, the document lists five recommendations, which will facilitate momentum towards achieving this new model:

  1. Boldly move forward with Interprofessional Collaborative Models.
  2. Establish an NP working/advisory group to ensure effective utilization of NPs.
  3. Establish an Interprofessional Working Group to oversee primary care reform.
  4. Increase the number of educational seats for NPs.
  5. Lead the discussion on NP role clarity.

"All British Columbians should have access to a regular, consistent primary care provider," said Natasha Prodan-Bhalla, VP, BCNPA. "The model we have proposed will make NPs accessible to everyone and lead to a healthier population in the long-term. We are looking forward to working closely with the Ministry of Health and Health Authorities to bring this plan to fruition."

Visit to review the full document.

The BC Nurse Practitioner Association is an independent, non-profit professional organization that represents the unique perspectives and needs of nurse practitioners in the province.

Key Messages:

  • NPs are an underutilized primary care provider that can increase access to primary health care; a key priority of the B.C. Government.
  • NPs provide primary health care that has similar outcomes to our GP colleagues.
  • Primary care should be organized around the needs of the patient, not the service provider.
  • Primary health care should focus on wellness rather than illness and quality rather than volume. This will lead to a healthier population in the long term.
  • B.C. needs to focus on transformation in primary care delivery that is interprofessional, collaborative, patient-centred and community-based within a relational care framework.
  • NPs can lead the way in total system transformation across all levels of health care, with a focus on transitions between sectors.

Contact Information:

Media Contact:
Andrea Burton