Can a holder of DBA use Dr. with in his name?

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Tarbuza, Dec 27, 2008.

  1. Delta

    Delta Active Member

    What nurse practitioners don't want to be called.

    Below is an excerpt of a statement form the AANP on what NP's should not be called.

    "The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) opposes use of terms such as
    "mid-level provider" and "physician extender" in reference to nurse practitioners (NPs)
    individually or to an aggregate inclusive of NPs. NPs are licensed independent
    practitioners. AANP encourages employers, policy-makers, healthcare professionals,
    and other parties to refer to NPs by their title. When referring to groups that include NPs,
    examples of appropriate terms include: independently licensed providers,
    primary care providers, healthcare professionals, and clinicians.
    Terms such as "midlevel provider" and "physician extender" are inappropriate
    references to NPs. These terms originated in bureaucracies and/or medical
    organizations; they are not interchangeable with use of the NP title. They call into
    question the legitimacy of NPs to function as independently licensed practitioners,
    according to their established scopes of practice. These terms further confuse the
    healthcare consumers and the general public, as they are vague and are inaccurately
    used to refer to a wide range of professions.
    The term "midlevel provider" (mid-level provider, mid level provider, MLP) implies that
    the care rendered by NPs is "less than" some other (unstated) higher standard. In fact,
    the standard of care for patients treated by an NP is the same as that provided by a
    physician or other healthcare provider, in the same type of setting. NPs are
    independently licensed practitioners who provide high quality and cost-effective care
    equivalent to that of physicians.1,2 The role was not developed and has not been
    demonstrated to provide only "mid-level" care.
    The term "physician extender" (physician-extender) originated in medicine and implies
    that the NP role evolved to serve an extension of physicians' care. Instead, the NP role
    evolved in the mid-1960's in response to the recognition that nurses with advanced
    education and training were fully capable of providing primary care and
    significantly enhancing access to high quality and cost-effective health care. While
    primary care remains the main focus of NP practice, the role has evolved over almost
    45 years to include specialty and acute-care NP functions. NPs are independently
    licensed and their scope of practice is not designed to be dependent on or an
    extension of care rendered by a physician.
    In addition to the terms cited above, other terms that should be avoided in reference to
    NPs include "limited license providers", "non-physician providers", and "allied health
    providers". These terms are all vague and are not descriptive of NPs. The term
    "limited license provider" lacks meaning, in that all independently licensed providers
    practice within the scope of practice defined by their regulatory bodies. "Non physician
    provider" is a term that lacks any specificity by aggregately including all healthcare
    providers who are not licensed as an MD or DO; this term could refer to nursing
    assistants, physical therapy aides, and any member of the healthcare team other than
    a physician. The term "allied health provider" refers to a category that excludes both
    medicine and nursing and, therefore, is not relevant to the NP role.

    For more information, visit"
  2. Delta

    Delta Active Member

    My 2 cents

    I believe it would be perfectly acceptable to call a nurse practitioner a doctor if they hold a DNP degree. However, they should clarify that they are a nurse practitioner. No different than a Chiropractor (D.C) being called doctor or a Physical therapist with a (DPT) or a Pharmacist with a PharmD or an Audiologist with a (AuD), or a Psychologist with a PhD. They just need to clarify what type of doctor they are.

    MD's and DO's don't have exclusive rights to the title "doctor". In fact, most countries award bachelors of Medicine and bachelors of Surgery (MBBS) to medical doctors. So the title comes without the degree.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 4, 2009
  3. cookderosa

    cookderosa Resident Chef


    Interesting! Thanks, those are some good points.
  4. mintaru

    mintaru Active Member

    It depends on the country. I'm quite sure there is no such regulation in Scandinavia, for instance, but in Germany it's even more complicated! Here the degree has to be used in the originally granted way. If that person has a PhD then the only legal way to use it is <NAME>, PhD (Univ. (of) <whatever>,<country>). By the way, Russia is one of the "accepted" countries in Germany, in contrast to the other countries of the CIS. (However, that dosen't mean that a Russian degree has any significant valve on the German job market outside of academia, but that's another topic.)
  5. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    The Germans have always been black and white, which is good. Just the facts!!! :D
  6. edowave

    edowave Active Member

    I have a feeling MDs in general do not share this same sentiment.
  7. Delta

    Delta Active Member

    The fact is, that the American Medical Association has failed in its arrogance to address the shortage of primary care providers in this country. Hence, the lowly nurse steps up to the plate to do so. Call them what you want, they (the nurse practitioners) will be the first to tell you they could care less about the title of "doctor" but they will get the job done nonetheless!
  8. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    I look at it a bit differently. The examples cited above take the title "doctor" not from their academic degrees--obviously--but from their status as professional practitioners. Academic titles and professional titles. Different.

    As for the "Ph.D." not being a "practitioner" (as stated by a different poster), that is confusing. Many Ph.D.'s are indeed practitioners, and many holders of other doctorates are very much academicians. I don't think the generality offered by that poster is very useful.

    And to the OP's question, here's a different take: I almost never call myself "doctor." Others do. And yes, it would be appropriate to call someone with a DBA "doctor."
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 5, 2009
  9. ratback5

    ratback5 New Member


    I am still new here but thought I would jump in. Here in SC it is illegal for NPs to call themselves DR in a healthcare setting. This was recently clarified by the state attorney general. Same holds true with Audiologists, Physical Therapists, etc.
  10. PsychPhD

    PsychPhD New Member

    When, where ... and why ?

    I am curious by those who insinuate that non-medical doctorates are only entitled to be called "Doctor" in an academic setting.

    While I agree that some people can be obnoxious when it comes to "proper respect," that is a phenomenon not exclusive to PhDs, etc.

    The minister doesn't stop being "Reverend" outside of church.
    The officer doesn't stop being "Captain" off the base.

    Why would the doctorate stop being "Doctor" off campus?

    Look at the AANP statement: Obviously there is a lot of "skin" in the battle over what one is called depending upon earned credentials. (And leave it to the AANP to declare that having a Master's degree -- the degree mid-way between a Bachelor's and doctorate -- not lead to calling a practitioner based upon a Master's "mid-level"!)

  11. Scott Henley

    Scott Henley New Member

    Technically speaking, a master's degree, as a graduate degree, is a higher degree than a MD. MD degrees are generally undergraduate, non-research qualifications that do not involve dissertation or defense.
  12. PsychPhD

    PsychPhD New Member

    How's that again?

    1) So I'm safe, though, when I view the Master's as mid-way between a Bachelor's and my doctorate? I can appropriately view a Master's prepared nurse practitioner as mid-level to my being a doctoral psychologist?

    2) In what world are MDs an undergraduate degree? Last time I checked, you need to have a BA/BS in order to attend medical school, making the MD a graduate (higher) degree. OK, we can resume the circular argument about the relative hierarchy of professional vs. academic degrees. Still, I think most of the medical profession would take serious issue with the MD not being seen as a post-graduate, "higher" degree.

  13. Scott Henley

    Scott Henley New Member

    In Canada, UK, Australia and New Zealand... MD's are considered undergraduate degrees.

    ...there are many more...

    The US, for some reason, considers an MD a "graduate degree" although it's a primary qualification to practice (i.e. first professional degree). MD's can take issue with this, but that doesn't change the fact that an MD is an undergraduate degree in most countries.
  14. geoffs

    geoffs Member

  15. PsychPhD

    PsychPhD New Member

    Wow ...

    I stand corrected.

    Just raises the question of how did American MDs acquire such seemingly impenetrable prestige as THE doctors, where the rest of the world apparently believe them to be "human body mechanics"?
  16. PsychPhD

    PsychPhD New Member

    A special case

    I think we can all agree that the Honorable Dr. Stephen Colbert, DFA is fully aware that his doctorate is honorary and he is doing it for the ironic laugh.

    It is more troubling when others, with all sincerity, expect the same recognition for being awarded an honorary doctorate as an earned one.

    Let's not forget Dr. Kermit the Frog, (Honorary Doctorate of Amphibious Letters, SUNY-Stony Brook, 1996)!

    Though, according to Wikipedia:
    And so it goes ...
  17. BillDayson

    BillDayson New Member

    Do MDs teach at the university level, in medical schools or in biomedical sciences programs? Do they ever advise Ph.D. students' dissertation work? Do they occupy the principal-investigator role in biomedical research laboratories? (If they don't, then who performs those functions?)

    Why can't a "primary qualification to practice" sometimes be a graduate degree? In the case of university professors, the primary qualification has historically been the doctorate. (Though in the past, we often saw MAs teaching at the university level as well.)

    Or at least it might sometimes be thought of that way in places that have historically made a social and professional distinction between university-doctors of medicine, trained in the ancient tradition of Galen, and barber-surgeons, street-level skilled-tradesmen who sutured wounds, set broken bones and typically enjoyed no university training at all.
  18. Arch23

    Arch23 New Member

    I find it a bit pretentious, too, for medical doctors to introduce themselves as Dr. outside of the medical setting.

    As far as nurses with doctorates are concerned, I find the use of the doctor title no more confusing than medical doctors calling themselves "Dr." For instance, if I had problems with diabetes or with my thyroid, would it help me to just look for a doctor, a medical doctor? No. I would have to look for an endocrinologist, since a psychiatrist can't obviously treat my concerns. So even in this medical situation, it wouldn't matter to me whether a nurse or a doctor calls him/herself Dr. since his/her medical services would be useless to me unless what s/he does relates to my medical concerns ...
  19. Scott Henley

    Scott Henley New Member

    We have to all remember that the profession of a "medical doctor" is not "doctor", it is "physician and surgeon". The only time you will see "doctor" is on their degree which reads "Doctor of Medicine". Their license to practice indicates "Physician and Surgeon" and their practice is "Physic Surgery and Midwifery" least in Canada.

    I don't know how many "only" M.D.'s teach other M.D.'s. I know there are a lot of M.D., Ph.D.'s at the Canadian Medical Schools.
  20. Scott Henley

    Scott Henley New Member

    Any doctoral degree holder can introduce themselves as "doctor" anywhere they see fit as long as it doesn't lead others to believe they are qualified to practice outside their profession.

    Would an M.D. introduce himself as "doctor" within an MIT mechanical engineering research lab? Sure, he could, but others might believe that he is a mechanical engineering researcher... with a Ph.D. in engineering. Same goes with an M.D. introducing himself as "doctor" within Harvard Business School. One would assume that he is a Ph.D. or DBA-holder. It really depends on the context.

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