McFarland Clinic

Mid-Level Providers

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May 27, 2011

McFarland Clinic has over 250 health care professionals that provide care to patients throughout central-Iowa. An important part of the McFarland Clinic health care team is the mid-level providers.

A mid-level provider can be a PA-C, physician assistant, certified, an ARNP, advanced registered nurse practitioner or a Certified Nurse Midwife, CNM. Knowing what makes a PA-C, ARNP and a nurse midwife similar to a physician and what makes them different can be beneficial during your appointment.
Medical training for a PA-C and an ARNP is different than the training a physician (MD/DO/DPM) receives. “A physician assistant takes the same courses as a medical doctor but they are more condensed,” says Rhonda Rotert, PA-C/ARNP supervisor at McFarland Clinic. “The residency program is also shorter for a PA-C,” adds Rotert. Upon hire, a PA-C is allowed to practice under the supervision of a MD or DO.
An ARNP is a nurse (RN or BSN) that has completed advanced, graduate-level education. The additional education and training allows them to have an expanded scope of practice over a traditional nurse. A CNM is an RN that has completed midwifery school and has become licensed as a Certified Nurse Midwife. A Upon hire, an ARNP and a CNM are allowed to practice medicine alongside a MD or DO.
Both PA-C and ARNP’s are board certified, have a specific number of continued-education hours and are licensed through the state and nation. “The licensing is very well-governed,” says Rotert.
Mid-level providers offer many of the same services as a primary care physician. These professionals provide physical exams, diagnose and treat illnesses, order and interpret labs and prescribe medication.
Mid-level providers have a diverse medical background. The advanced training can be for a specialty, like mid-wife or neurology, or can be for family practice. At McFarland Clinic, half of our mid-level providers work in primary care and the other half work in different specialties, says Rotert.
Mid-level providers enhance patient care at McFarland Clinic. There is an open-door policy between every mid-level provider and every supervising physician. We are a physician extender, says Rotert. Having open communication and a good working relationship is mandatory for the success of a mid-level and it’s also how you practice safely, adds Rotert.
“Patient’s notes are reviewed by a supervising physician. More complex cases are reviewed face-to-face,” says Rotert. “These safety nets are in place to ensure that we provide the best care to our patients.”
“We have the flexibility to spend extra time with a patient and listen to their needs. We are part of the coordinated health care team,” adds Rotert.
McFarland Clinic embraces mid-level providers and uses them to their full potential, says Rotert.
“Seeing these successful teams leads other departments to want this relationship,” adds Rotert. “Physicians and staff treat us with respect; we interact easily and as peers,” says Rotert, “we have a good group of physicians.”
To learn more about McFarland Clinic and the services offered in a community near you, visit the McFarland Clinic website at
Learn more about the roles of medical professionals working at McFarland clinic:

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