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The One Thing You Need To Know Before Finding A Collaborating Doc

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The One Thing You Need To Know Before Finding A Collaborating Doc

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Dr. Annie DePasquale is a board certified family medicine physician who founded Collaborating Docs in 2020 to assist Nurse Practitioners in fulfilling their dreams of having their own independent practice. She is passionate about helping NPs and PAs find a caring and helpful collaborating doctor. Collaborating Docs has a step by step, easy process to help connect you with a physician. They emphasize quality and require the collaborating doctor to meet with you once a month and always be available during normal business hours. They also partner with a legal team to meet the different requirements and regulations that vary from state to state.

Tell us about your business. In the fall of 2020, I founded Collaborating Docs to help nurse practitioners to build their own independent practices.  Our primary offering is a match-making service that makes it easy for Nurse Practitioners to find supportive, experienced & affordable collaborative physicians.  We also offer a popular online course (CollaboratingDocsMasterclass.com) that teaches nurse practitioners how to create their own telemedicine practices.

What inspired you to start? I’m a family medicine physician and when I got my first clinic job out of residency, I was mentored by two veteran nurse practitioners.  I will forever be grateful to Lisa & Teresa who taught me how to best take care of my patients.  I created my business to give back to the community that helped me so much.

What sets Collaborating Docs apart from other companies? Having been a collaborating physician for many NPs throughout the years, I learned how challenging it is to find an accessible, knowledgeable, and affordable collaborative.  My company is now the premier service for helping NPs find collaborating physicians.  We are elevating the care provided to NPs by requiring that the physician 1) be available for questions during normal business hours, 2) review 10% of charts, 3) meet once a month over a video chat, and 4) perform any other state requirements.

What are you most proud of as the owner? I am most proud that I’m a female start-up founder who has three young children (5 years and under)!  Society may tell us to focus on our family alone, but I love growing my business as I raise my kids.

Do you see any trends in reasons behind why some NPs have a hard time finding a supervising physician? A lot of physicians have an illogical fear that NPs are taking over their ‘turf’.  With our broken healthcare system, I know with certainly that NPs are big part of the solution.  I wish more physicians would come to understand this.

Are there certain states or areas of the country that you have seen NPs have a harder time finding a collaborating physician? Several Southern states, like Mississippi, Georgia & South Carolina, require that the collaborating physician not only be licensed in the state, but also live/work in the state.  This greatly decreases the pool of collaboratives compared to other states that allow physicians to collaborate out-of-state so long as they hold the proper license.  Another issue is when states, like California, Georgia, and Ohio, limit how many collaboratives an individual physician can help, which makes finding a collaborative physician complex since many collaboratives are already at their max. 

What is the cost? Monthly rate for the service, based on factors like: background training, scope of practice, full or part-time, experience, where you are located. They charge $500 to find your match, which can be paid $250 upfront and the remaining $250 within 30 days. If Collaborating Docs cannot find a match for your practice within 30 days, you can get your fee back refunded to you. Typically, they find collaboratives within 1 week.

If you need help finding a collaborating physician for your practice, Collaborating Docs is a great resource!

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Elizabeth Francis, BSN, RN

Emergency Department registered nurse and doctoral student at Duke University, specializing in Psychiatric Mental Health and Addictions.

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