I am a family practice nurse practitioner student and I am writing in regards to the article, "Doctor Shortage."
I understand the shortage of primary care physicians your town is facing. The team mentioned in the article has created a wonderful service. This would allow patients to become established with someone who could treat their urgent need but would also be able to begin the process of caring for a patient for the next provider who would be taking over as the primary care physician.
Many people don't receive preventative medicine tests, procedures and laboratory studies as recommended for their gender and age because of lack of insurance, cost, transportation or lack of a primary care physician. These patients are at a high risk for health problems and complications.
Getting someone established with a practice who has not stayed up-to-date with their preventative medicine can seem like an insurmountable task. The first provider that has contact with these patients who are coming to them through the "Care Connection Services" can treat their urgent/acute need, but also begin the process of determining what other health promotion needs are most applicable for this patients, in preparation for their next visit with the provider who will become their primary care provider.
With the changes coming for many Americans with the full effect of Obamacare, nurse practitioners in primary care will be an excellent addition to the healthcare arena for providing care to patients and will aid in the current shortage of physicians.