Respond one of your colleagues’ posts by offering a possible resolution to their questions/concerns with supporting documentation.
at least 2 references in each peer responses!
Nursing boards were created to establish guidelines for the scope of nursing practice. Each state has established its own board; thus regulations can vary by state. Advanced practice registered nurses must be familiar with their own state board’s regulations as it pertains to their practice, and advocate for the expansion of the nurse practitioner’s ability to practice and provide best care.
A main topic of conversation among nursing boards is the ability of advanced practice registered nurses (APRN’s) to practice independently of a collaborating physician. As discussed by Bosse et al., (2017), the ability of APRN’s to practice independently would help fill the gap in access to care associated with physician shortages and remote locations. Greater access to care has the potential to improve outcomes and reduce healthcare costs and complications. Currently, Missouri and Illinois both require APRN’s to maintain a collaborative practice agreement with a physician within a certain geographic range (Nurse Practice Act, 2018; Nursing & Collaborative Practice, 1996). The National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) encourages APRN’s to advocate for independent practice in their states (Bosse et al., 2017).
As technology plays an increasingly central role in the provision of healthcare, the use of technology must be addressed by regulatory boards. Telehealth is another solution to improving access to healthcare, especially in rural areas. Missouri permits APRN’s to practice virtually if the care is being provided to patients in remote areas (Utilization of telehealth, 2014). Illinois permits APRN’s to treat residents of the state via telehealth without geographical stipulations (Telehealth Act, 2018).
As nurse practitioners, we can adhere to these regulations while also advocating for the advancement of the advanced practice registered nurse’s role in healthcare. Another opportunity for advocacy lies in the use of telehealth to improve access to care in rural areas. By providing exceptional care and demonstrating the knowledge and skills needed to practice independently, we can emulate the need to expand the scope of practice for nurse practitioners.