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Types of Health Care Professionals

The general term "provider" is often used at Norris Health Center to refer to any of our medical staff members. Everyone has specific skills, though, and more specific titles are defined here:

  • Staff Physician: Our physicians are M.D.s; licensed to perform surgery and prescribe medication in every state. Physicians possess a bachelor's degree (science-focused) and are required to attend four years of medical school. Beyond that, physicians participate in a residency program for an additional two to six years where they may then choose to specialize in a certain area of medicine. M.D.s must pass state licensing examinations to become fully qualified physicians.

  • Psychiatrist: A psychiatrist is a physician who has completed medical school and a residency program in the field of psychiatry. Our psychiatrists focus on the diagnosis and medication treatment of a variety of mental health problems.

  • Psychologist: Psychologists are professionals who have received a doctorate in psychology. At Norris, psychologists practice the evaluation and treatment of emotional, behavioral, and interpersonal difficulties.

  • Counselor: Counselors are professionals who have received a master's degree in psychology, educational psychology, community counseling or clinical social work. At Norris, counselors practice the evaluation and treatment of emotional, behavioral and interpersonal difficulties.

  • Dietician: Dieticians are professionals who specialize in the field of nutrition. At Norris, our part time dietician, performs many duties including nutrition counseling for clients, developing and implementing nutrition education programs, and helping patients with special needs, allergies, health problems, or a desire for increased energy or weight change to devise healthy diets.

  • Nurse Practitioner: Our nurse practitioners (NPs) at Norris Health Center are registered nurses (RNs) with a graduate degree in nursing. NPs are qualified to manage most health problems. Emphasis is placed on health promotion and disease prevention as well as the diagnosis and treatment of acute and chronic diseases, injuries, and common health problems. Our NPs also have the capability to prescribe medications.

  • Nurse Clinician: Nurse clinicians are registered nurses (RNs) who are graduates of approved nursing programs and are nationally licensed upon completing the required examination. RNs provide direct patient care by observing and assessing symptoms, assisting providers during routine examinations, and dispensing medications. Our RN/Health educators also help educate students about maintaining a healthy lifestyle. They provide the education in a variety of settings including class rooms. Both state laws and the work environment help determine the daily tasks of RNs.

  • Medical Technologist or Clinical Laboratory Scientist: Medical Technologists are graduates of approved university medical technology programs and are nationally certified by the American Society of Clinical Pathology upon completion of the required examination and internship. The technologists provide phlebotomy service, specimen preparation, patient education and most importantly, on-site laboratory testing of various body fludis.

  • Medical Assistants: Medical assistants complete a two year associate degree. They assist the providers in a variety of ways such as triage, vitals, rooming patients, assisting with exams and patient education.


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