Where we’ve been and where we’re going
The simple answer to the title statement is “I don’t know.” Not much is known about the history of NPs and PAs who’ve been working in Pulmonary medicine. Not else more is known about how roles have been developed and how these providers have been prepared to work in these fields. We know they are out there, we know they work hard to find their place, and we know the pressures they are under in an ever-changing healthcare model.
The idea of starting a Pulmonary Advanced Practice Provider organization has been in the back of all of our minds (even if we never said it out loud). We see the organization, support, and place in the medical world the other specialty and subspecialty groups have provided for their members. We’ve merely floated along without one and in doing so have isolated our medical culture to that of our practice. I know, when I’ve traveled to conferences and accidentally bumped into a fellow APP in pulmonary I felt like I’d found another unicorn. I would maul them with questions about their practice, training, patients, procedures, call, and pay structure because I had no one to compare myself to and this was my chance. Well, now that is all going to change.
So where are we going? We are going to get organized. We are going to define what a pulmonary APP is. We are going to set a standard of knowledge by providing guidelines, educational sources, and eventually certification. We are going to discuss and establish fair pay schedules. We are going to make our place in the medical world as an official sub-specialty for NPs and PAs. Now, who’s going with me?