Schizophrenia affects 1 percent of the general population in the United States. Unfortunately, this common illness is often poorly understood and feared by many health care professionals. Whether nurse practitioners who work in primary care are aware of it or not, they inevitably come into daily or weekly contact with schizophrenics. Patients with schizophrenia represent a vulnerable population with high medical needs that are often missed or undertreated. Primary care providers have the potential to reduce health differences of this disease. This provides Primary Care providers with a general understanding of the psychiatric and medical issues specific to patients with schizophrenia.