As the NP profession continues to grow, legal barriers to full practice authority remain
By Lauren Biscaldi on ClinicalAdvisor.com
Despite the growing popularity of nurse practitioners (NPs) – more than 916 million patients visited an NP within the last year – only 21 states and the District of Columbia grant NPs full practice authority. “Over 25 states have licensed, fully trained healthcare providers who are not practicing to their full education and training, and citizens of those states are missing access to care,” said Susan VanBeuge, DNP, APRN, and AANP Nevada State Representative. “With the primary care shortage in the United States being as acute as it is, we need all hands on deck to provide care.”
NPs are the providers of choice for millions of Americans, with more than 205,000 NPs currently licensed in the United States. That number is expected to increase to 244,000 by 2025, according to statistics released by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) in anticipation of National Nurse Practitioner Week 2015.