It’s 2021 and NNPEN is still vertical. And eager to act, to kick covid in the butt.
As painful as the past year has been, covid has been good to NNPEN in that instead of non stop travel the founders suddenly had time to collaborate even as covid changed everything around us. Demand for healthcare services as a result of covid has highlighted the NP’s ability to create access to healthcare services while delivering better care at lower overall cost than physician PCPs. Many states waived scope of practice constraints like physician supervision on NP freedom to practice autonomously on an emergency basis and have not looked back. On January 4th, 2021, Massachusetts, a restricted state blessed NP autonomous practice with bipartisan FPA (Full Practice Authority) legislation. Last July Florida, the second-largest Medicare market in the country, granted FPA status to NPs in primary care.
NPEs are kicking in the FPA door state by state, and it is swinging open. It is a call to action for NP entrepreneurs (NPEs) –for you, our members. In turn, What support can our members expect from NNPEN in 2021?
Our Goal #1 is acceleration of the pace of nurse-led practice startups, which in turn will lead to broader access to patient-centered health care services in America. In short, we have made substantial progress [during lockdown!] developing tools to accelerate our members’ transition from the pre-contemplation question of “Am I an Entrepreneur?”, through the Owner Go/No Go decision, to the satisfaction [and terror ] as a practice owner that at last “I am the boss of me.” We now offer Business Basics learning experiences that are modestly priced, taught by subject matter experts both in and outside of nursing and accessible 24/7 These offerings fill a content void created by the flawed thinking that dismisses the need for an orientation to business in nursing education, and introduces NP practice owners to a like-minded NP owner community that supplements the member services NNPEN currently can provide. Recall that NNPEN was created in 2017 in response to this question:
To preserve the benefits of nurse-led care the number of nurse-led start-ups must grow substantially and operate sustainably…How will that happen?
Putting one foot in front of the other has led us to some initial strategies. But how do we know if we’re on the right track? We measure. We know that 2/3 of our NPE members are not practice owners. Given our goal is to accelerate NPE transition into ownership we have to ask “Are We making a difference?” We will be answering that question using two metrics which we invite you to track with us—and even more important, to dialogue with us about what we could be doing better:
1 .25% growth year over year in our membership
2. Positive trend in % of members who transition into ownership after joining NNPEN
Our Goal #2 is Nurse-led practice participation in Alternative Payment Model arrangements. Full Practice Authority legislative success is pyrrhic victory if practices are not financially sustainable. Results from NNPEN’s 2019-2020 survey of NP practice owners, which we hope to see published in 2021, confirmed that NP practices typically choose inadequate FFS arrangements over APM options that pay performance bonuses but also carry modest financial risk. Not surprisingly, lack of education about managing payment risk soundly beat out lack of willing payer partners as the biggest barrier to APM participation As a result, preparation for risk-based payment reform has become one of our explicit goals for late 2021 and beyond. Watch for new NNPEN workshops that link NP quality and cost outcomes directly to the nursing process, and that explain why NNPEN sees the nursing process as your practice’s reliable profitability PPE. NPs who see RISK as a four letter word will become informed risk-takers because APMs make sense financially. Our bookies are betting on NP APM participation by 2023.
Finally, these goals are only two of the exciting developments that have been incubating since lockdown began. My role will be changing as will Lynn’s. We have brought on board Korrynn Lancaster as the staffer who keeps us connected to each other—and to you. Hang in there as we roll out ways of connecting with you and for you that we never dreamed possible two years ago. 2021 is going to be a great year!