Nurse practitioners with doctorates have increasingly been pushing back on states' moves to address whether nonphysicians can be called doctors, The Washington Post reported Aug. 20.
A 2023 Florida bill, vetoed in June by Gov. Ron DeSantis, would have prevented nonphysicians from using titles including doctor of medicine, physician, medical resident and hospitalist. A comparable measure became law in Georgia this year and in Indiana in 2022.
Recently, California ordered a nurse practitioner to pay nearly $20,000 for advertising herself as "Doctor Sarah," which led many nurses to challenge a law already on the books in that state.
This debate becomes more critical as the physician shortage is exacerbated, according to the report.