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 The Nurse Practitioner Marks 25th Annual Legislative Update

Comprehensive Review of Laws and Regulations Affecting APRNs' Practice in Every State 
 
Philadelphia, PA (January 22, 2013) –  The most comprehensive review of new legal and regulatory issues affecting advanced nursing practice across the United States is now available in the "25th Annual Legislative Update," presented exclusively by The Nurse Practitioner: The American Journal of Primary Healthcare.  The Nurse Practitioner is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.
 
Compiled by Susanne J. Phillips, MSN, FNP-BC, the annual supplement presents a comprehensive review of the legislative proceedings, bills, and laws pertaining to advanced practice registered nursing (APRN) practice in every state.  The 25th Annual Legislative Update is now freely available on the journal website.
 
Progress in Evidence-Based Reforms Improving Access to APRN Care
The 25th Annual Legislative Update incorporates current information provided by state nursing boards and APRN associations about the "hot topics" affecting APRN practice in their states.  "Despite attempts by medical boards to limit current practice authority, APRNs succeeded in improving access to APRN care in several states," writes Phillips. 
 
The special edition provides an essential update on recent legislative and regulatory activity promoting access to APRN care, prompted by decades of peer-reviewed research demonstrating the quality and safety of APRN practice.  Efforts are ongoing to standardize laws and regulations governing APRN practice across states, and to establish effective consumer protections.
 
Yet legislation continues to be "vehemently opposed" in many states, according to Phillips.  She discusses steps APRNs can take to "empower legislators to move beyond the outdated, evidence-lacking arguments that APRNs are not educated enough, safe enough, or credentialed enough to care for the nation's residents."
 
This year's update presents a rundown of the latest developments in the areas of legal authority, reimbursement, and prescriptive authority for all 50 states.  It also includes a table summarizing practice authority for nurse practitioners in every state and the District of Columbia, along with updated statistics and the total number of APRNs reported by state boards of nursing.
 
Nurses Encouraged to Work Together to Meet Challenges
The past year has seen several important improvements in legal authorization of APRN practice, including passage of legislation and promulgation of regulations in 17 states.  In addition, eight states reported statutory or regulatory activity leading to improvements in prescriptive authority.
 
But challenges remain, including reports of defeated bills and unsuccessful regulatory reform efforts in five states.  In addition, two states—Kentucky and Missouri—passed legislation limiting APRN practice in specific ways.   Phillips urges APRNs and others interested in ensuring access to evidence-based healthcare to support state APRN organizations.
 
Nurses are also encouraged to check out the Future of Nursing Campaign for Action, supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and AARP, to see what steps are being taken and participate in efforts to improve nursing practice.  Phillips adds, "This is a great way for all of the APRN organizations to work together to implement the recommendations and improve practice in your state."
 
About The Nurse Practitioner
The Nurse Practitioner: The American Journal of Primary Healthcare is the leading monthly source for clinical, practical, cutting-edge information for advanced practice nurses and other primary care clinicians. Each issue presents peer-reviewed articles that range from clinical topics and research to political and practice issues. In addition, The Nurse Practitioner provides regular features, columns, continuing education and pharmacology credits, staff development education, and more.  Its mission is to meet the needs of the nurse practitioner (and other advanced practice nurses and clinicians) by providing practical, cutting-edge clinical and professional information.
 
About Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Lippincott Williams & Wilkins (LWW) is a leading international publisher of trusted content delivered in innovative ways to practitioners, professionals, and students to learn new skills, stay current on their practice, and make important decisions to improve patient care and clinical outcomes.
 
LWW is part of Wolters Kluwer Health, a leading global provider of information, business intelligence, and point-of-care solutions for the healthcare industry. Wolters Kluwer Health is part of Wolters Kluwer, a market-leading global information services company with 2011 annual revenues of €3.4 billion ($4.7 billion).

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