A Professional Partnership
The relationship that can develop between a physician and an entrepreneurial, self-employed Nurse Practitioner has been shown to be powerful and mutually beneficial, particularly for a home-visiting medical practice. Dr. Spears’ practice is based on just such a partnership with several trusted and self-directed NPs in two of the three regional areas in which he works.
Dr. Spears provides elderly home-bound patients with superior healthcare services and compassionate support in their homes through his practice in three locations – Long Island, NY, Boston, MA and Bethlehem, PA. He is able to operate his practice in these three different geographic locations by partnering and working collaboratively with highly qualified, trusted, independent nurse practitioners, who provide ongoing care for patients as well as support for the day-to-day caregivers.
As far back as 1972, Dr. Spears took note of how patients and their caregivers alike loved NPs because they are frequently good listeners and they tend to spend more time than most of the doctors. Physicians like working with them because they have learned to trust NP nursing and medical knowledge and skills.
Four decades later, Dr. Spears continues collaborative relationships with several NPs in New York. He is looking for additional professional linkages in all of the three states in which he practices (New York, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania).
How it works
The NP triad of skilled nursing experience, medical knowledge, and willingness to listen has proven to be very beneficial in the care of home-bound patients who usually are struggling with multiple medical issues.
When partnering with an independent NP, Dr. Spears provides Care Plan Oversight. This means he signs orders and makes periodic visits to the patient himself but he relies on self-employed NPs to do the bulk of the day-to-day visits and check-ins. The NPs file visit reports and keep Dr. Spears up to date with patient condition and developments. These NPs are not employees of Dr. Spears, and they are not required to give up any existing patients they presently serve.
Because the NPs act as independent contractors, a flexible workload that suits the individual NP is developed over time with Dr. Spears, who seeks to partner as required to avoid over-working any one professional. Openings and opportunities may come up at irregular times but he is always willing to talk and consider additions to his team.
What would be expected?
Basic qualifications for consideration in a professional relationship with Dr. Spears are outlined in the American Academy of Home Care Medicine’s summary of Clinical Competencies.
Beyond the medical and nursing training and experience, additional expectations include:
- Personal organizational skills: NPs who flourish in such a professional relationship are highly self-directed.
- Time management skills
- Strong communication and interpersonal skills (with patients, family members, other professionals and with Dr. Spears himself)
- Experience working independently on behalf of elderly patients, many of whom are in home settings instead of clinical environments
Independent Nurse Practitioners independently bill Medicare and commercial insurers for their services. We can provide training in how to do this efficiently.
It’s our goal to help homebound patients and their families to make this time of their lives as rich and as happy as possible. If you’re a nurse practitioner who is experienced working with elderly patients or working in a home-based setting and are interested in joining Dr. Spears’ team, please contact us. We’re always looking for compassionate and highly competent medical professionals to join our team!