Birmingham, Alabama, April 23, 2020: Nurse Practitioners are making a difference in Alabama’s fight against COVID-19.
Nurse Practitioners (NPs) are advanced practice nurses with a master’s degree or higher. NPs provide high-quality health care services to patients and have the training and experience to diagnose and treat a wide range of health problems in primary care, acute care, or specialized care to specific populations. Dr. Eileen Meyer, Assistant Director of Advanced Practice Providers and an NP at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Hospital, has been on the front lines since the COVID-19 crisis began. Meyer serves with fellow NPs on the testing team for UAB and said, “It has been empowering to serve in this role during this unprecedented time in our health care history. NPs have stepped up to the plate to provide outstanding care on the front lines.”
Nurse Practitioner Alliance of Alabama (NPAA) President, Dr. D’Ann Somerall, stated that, “Governor Ivey recognizes the vital role NPs serve in providing health care for the citizens of Alabama. Recently, Gov. Ivey issued an COVID-19 Executive Order relaxing Alabama-specific NP practice restrictions so that AL NPs can practice to the fullest of the extent of our education allowing our citizens to have improved access to care.”
Amy Younce, an NP at Robertsdale Urgent Care provides primary care and urgent care at her rural clinic in Southern Alabama. She said that she has had many sick visits from patients who are unable to see their primary care providers due to restrictions on sick visits or closed offices. She and her staff are assessing patients with COVID-l9-type complaints in a drive-through clinic to minimize exposure to other patients and to the staff. Younce said, “My hope is that this pandemic will continue to prove and support the years of studies that show Nurse Practitioners provide quality, economical access to care that would otherwise be absent. We have shown the skills, education, and devotion to continue to care for those in need in Alabama and will continue to provide excellent care well after this crisis is over.”
NPAA is the professional organization that represents Alabama NPs and students enrolled in NP programs. The mission of NPAA is to promote high-quality healthcare for Alabama’s citizens. All NPs and NP students in Alabama are urged to join NPAA. For more information, visit http://www.npalliancealabama.org.