Southern Aesthetics and Dr. Treece Respond to New Louisiana Legislation on Nurse Practitioner Independence

The call for maintaining high healthcare standards aims to promote patient safety and well-being.

Amidst concerns over patient safety, Southern Aesthetics, led by Dr. Treece, stresses importance of maintaining healthcare standards following the decision.

We must balance the need for increased healthcare access with the imperative to provide high-quality, safe medical treatments.”

— Dr. Penelope Treece, MD

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA, UNITED STATES, January 18, 2024 / — In light of the recent passage of House Bill 495 by the Louisiana House of Representatives, Southern Aesthetics, a prominent cosmetic surgery practice in New Orleans, voices its concern regarding the implications for patient safety and healthcare standards. The bill, allowing nurse practitioners to practice independently from doctors, has sparked a debate within the medical community about the adequacy of training and expertise among healthcare providers.

Nurse practitioners are required to work under the supervision of a certified aesthetic doctor. However, some are circumventing this rule by collaborating with psychiatrists or emergency room doctors instead, and then starting their practices. Officially, this practice is not permitted, yet it appears to be overlooked by enforcement bodies, including the Louisiana Association of Nurse Practitioners. The established procedure for addressing such violations involves filing a detailed complaint with the LSBME against any nurse practitioner who is not adhering to the proper supervision requirements.

Dr. Penelope Treece, MD, founder of Southern Aesthetics and a respected figure in the cosmetic surgery field, emphasizes the crucial importance of maintaining rigorous training and qualifications for all healthcare practitioners. “At Southern Aesthetics, our primary concern is the safety and satisfaction of our patients. The recent legislative changes call for a thorough examination of their potential impact on patient care. While we acknowledge the evolving landscape of cosmetic procedures, we advocate for maintaining or enhancing healthcare standards to guarantee the best outcomes for those seeking aesthetic treatments,” says Dr. Treece.

The bill, which aims to address healthcare access in underserved areas, introduced an amendment requiring nurse practitioners to complete 6,000 to 10,000 hours of practice with a licensed physician before they can operate independently. However, concerns have been raised about the disparity in training between doctors and nurses. Physicians like Dr. Treece highlight that doctors receive extensive training, including several years of medical school and residency, accumulating up to 19,000 hours of patient care, compared to the significantly fewer hours of clinical practice required for nurse practitioners.

“Changes in regulations related to medical procedures might be influenced by a range of factors, including public health considerations such as those associated with the COVID-19 pandemic,” states Dr. Treece. This legislation, while addressing the shortage of physicians, may inadvertently compromise patient safety by not fully bridging the gap in training and experience. Southern Aesthetics remains committed to advocating for the highest standards in healthcare and patient safety. To this end, the practice supports the creation of a new oversight board for nurse practitioners as outlined in the bill but urges that this measure be part of a broader, more proactive approach to healthcare regulation.

Dr. Treece and Southern Aesthetics call for continued dialogue and collaboration with the Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners (LSBME) and other stakeholders to ensure that legislative changes align with the utmost standards of patient care. “We must balance the need for increased healthcare access with the imperative to provide high-quality, safe medical treatments,” adds Dr. Treece.

In keeping with its tradition of excellence, Southern Aesthetics will persist in investing in comprehensive education and training for its staff. This approach is critical to ensure that, irrespective of regulatory changes, the practice continues to lead in providing superior care to its clients. Southern Aesthetics’ active participation in shaping the future of healthcare in Louisiana exemplifies its dedication to excellence and prioritizing the well-being of patients.

About Southern Aesthetics:

Southern Aesthetics dedicates its practice to providing the highest level of quality in cosmetic surgery in a beautiful, comfortable, safe, and private environment. We have a dedicated, professional, and caring team in Metairie that takes pride in bringing out the you in be.YOU.tiful.

For media inquiries, interviews, or to schedule a consultation, please contact:

Penelope Treece, MD
Southern Aesthetics
+1 504-779-7749
[email protected]
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