Focus groups reveal perils and promises of managed care for nurse practitioners.

S. S. Cohen, D. J. Mason, L. S. Arsenie, S. M. Sargese, D. Needham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Decades of practice and research suggest that nurse practitioners (NPs) provide cost-effective and high-quality care. Managed care's emphasis on prevention and cost savings led some policy makers to view NPs as a way to meet the need for primary care providers. However, access to and utilization of NPs has increasingly been controlled by managed care organizations (MCOs) through their selection of providers for primary care panels. This study employed qualitative methodology to examine NPs' experiences with MCOs. Three focus groups, comprising 27 NPs in New York and Connecticut, revealed NPs' mixed reactions to managed care and a range of sentiments regarding NPs' efforts to be listed as primary care providers. The results reflected NPs' concerns about their perceived "invisibility," as well as their sense of "invincibility" in the ways in which NPs are responding to the barriers posed by MCOs. They identified barriers to, as well as ways to facilitate, being listed by MCOs, and described the importance of NPs working individually and collectively in negotiating with MCOs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)48, 54, 57-60 passim
JournalThe Nurse practitioner
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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