Nurse practitioners (NPs) are choosing primary care at a higher rate than physicians and physician assistants, according to data from the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP).

In 2017, more than 89% of NPs were prepared in primary care programs, compared with 14.5% of physicians who entered a primary care residency.

Regarding specific areas of primary care preparation, 62.4% of NPs were prepared in family practice, 23% were in adult and geriatrics practice, 4.8% were in pediatrics, and 3.5% were in women’s health.

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Currently, 234,000 NPs are practicing in the United States, compared with 68,300 in 1999. By the year 2025, the number of practicing NPs is expected to be 244,000.

A large increase in persons entering the healthcare system is anticipated, largely due to an increase in the overall population.

Visit the AANP’s website to learn more about NP’s in primary care. 

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This article originally appeared on Clinical Advisor