2017 was an important year for the healthcare industry nationwide, with multiple states enacting new laws to equip advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) with full practice authority, allowing them to practice to the top of their education scope. APRNs — including nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, nurse anesthetists, and nurse midwives — are a critical part of efforts to ensure and expand access to high-quality, cost-effective healthcare across the country.

As we move in 2018, APRNs now have full, autonomous practice and prescribing authority in 25 states and the District and Columbia. In remaining states, APRNs continue to practice under supervision or collaboration with physicians. According to HealthcareFinanceNews.com:

“In 2017, over 20 states reported passage of legislation positively impacting access to and delivery of healthcare nationwide.”

In an effort to respond to the ongoing opioid crisis, several states have also enacted new laws and regulations on the prescribing of controlled substances. California and Oregon passed legislation in 2017 bringing nurses practitioners’ role into line with the federal Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act. These new laws clarify the role of nurse practitioners in prescribing buprenorphine, an important part of treatment for opioid use disorders.

To learn more about the national move to grant full practice authority to advanced practice registered nurses, visit here.

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