As lawmakers in state legislatures across the country consider bills that would expand nurse practitioners’ scope of practice, they are likely familiar with the difference in the years and hours that nurse practitioners and physicians put into their training.

For example, the majority of nurse practitioners (NPs) complete a master’s degree in two to three years plus 500–750 hours of clinical training and they aren’t required to complete a residency to graduate or become licensed—very dissimilar to the requirements physicians must complete to become licensed.