Nurse practitioners in primary care. VI. Assessment of their deployment with the Utilization and Financial Index.
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The impact of multidisciplinary teams that incorporate nurse practitioners on total use of health services was measured with the new Utilization and Financial Index (UF-Index). The data from two studies, a randomized controlled trial and a before-and-after study, showed that, in spite of large increases in use of ambulatory services by practice populations served by family physician-nurse practitioner teams, the ultimate effect has been a substantial reduction in total use of health services. The effect was associated with major reductions in hospital care for the same populations. Such economic advantages to society proved feasible within a fee-for-service context and in settings where rigorous evidence demonstrated no concurrent deterioration in health status of patients or in quality of care.
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