This website is designed to promote the position that Nurse Practitioners
and Advanced Practice Nurses should have consistency of accepted,
published, and established legal authority, rights, and scopes of
practice among the various states.
In recent years, Nurse Practitioners and Advanced Practice Nurses have seen an overall increase in scope and independence of practice. Despite this, significant variation of scope of practice, legal requirements, prescriptive authority, diagnostic authority, and organizational oversight persists among the states. In 2007, The Center for the Health Professions noted that only eleven states allowed Advanced Practice Nurses to practice completely independent from physician supervision and collaboration (Center for the Health Professions, 2007). Nine states did not require national certification to practice as an Advanced Practice Nurse in 2007 (Center for the Health Professions, 2007), and thirteen states currently have no physician involvement in prescriptive privileges of Nurse Practitioners (Pearson, 2009). Furthermore, Advanced Practice Nurses have inconsistent organizational oversight, utilizing either independent Board of Nursing or joint Board of Nursing and Board of Medicine involvement in various states. Consistency of practice and regulation among all states would present a more trusted and understood profession to the Medical community and the public. Additionally, it would yield a common understanding and voice for Advanced Practice Nurses nationwide. Furthermore, national standards of practice and legal authority may remove some state’s control and limitation of Advanced Practice Nurses. Movement toward universal acceptance of baseline practice and regulatory standards would help provide understanding and support for all Advanced Practice Nurses.
Center for the Health Professions. (2007). Chart overview of nurse practitioner scopes of practice in the united states. San Francisco, CA. University of California, Christian, S., Dower, C., O’Neil, E.
Pearson, L. (2009). The pearson report – 2009. The American Journal for Nurse Practitioners, vol. 13(2), p. 4-82.