Home Forums The Controversy of the DOCTOR Title Bills restricting or banning nurses with doctorate degrees from using “doctor” Reply To: Bills restricting or banning nurses with doctorate degrees from using “doctor”

#46350
Jeffrey
Moderator

Hello Susan,

I am a DNP student in Southern California in an FNP program. I agree with Ryan that restricting professionals other than Medical Doctors (MDs) from using the title “doctor” is frustrating. There are many professions besides nursing, with doctoral programs that are the terminal degrees of those professions. All of these professions deserve to be identified according to their educational level. The American Medical Association (AMA) states, “Patients deserve care led by physicians-the most highly educated, trained and skilled care professionals” (AMA successfully fights scope of practice expansions that threaten patient safety, 2023). It seems a little egotistical for the medical profession to say they are better than everyone else. Ultimately, the patient should come first, not the title you wear on your badge. Even as a bedside nurse, many patients misidentify me as a doctor. I explain that my role is different, however, because I do not want to be labeled as a physician. At my institution, the word doctor, or even MD, is not used to identify a physician; their badges say, physician.

This issue is mainstream and is even present in pop culture. In the movie, The Hangover is a dentist. When he says he is a doctor, he is corrected by his friends and a hospital physician. While he may not be a medical doctor, he is still trained as a dentist, with a doctorate with the title Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) or Doctor of Dental Medicine (DDM), so why is it incorrect for him to identify himself as a doctor?

Reference:

AMA successfully fights scope of practice expansions that threaten patient safety. (2023, May 15). Retrieved July 14, 2023, from AMA: https://www.ama-assn.org/practice-management/scope-practice/ama-successfully-fights-scope-practice-expansions-threaten

  • This reply was modified 8 months, 3 weeks ago by Jeffrey.