A nurse-practitioner (NP) is a trained registered nurse (RN) who has received additional medical training that allows him or her to assess symptoms, order and interpret lab tests, create treatment plans, and prescribe medications. An NP’s expertise covers basic health care but it does not have the complex training of a Doctor of Medicine (MD). The scope of practice depends on the area’s regulations.
For instance, in the U.S., some states allow their NPs to practice independently while some require an MD’s supervision. In the UK, NPs often carry out tasks which are similar to those of doctors such as general practitioner surgeries and accident and emergency department procedures.