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APN roles are broken down into more generalized areas of Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, Clinical Nurse

Specialist, Nurse Practitioner, and Certified Nurse Midwife. The U.S. have their own individual nurse practice acts that discuss regulations for APN’s to include education, certification/licensure, and scope of practice (Watson & Hillman, 2010). Even though APN’s scope of practice may be different in each state APN’s can  universally can diagnose where specialty nurses can still only rely on nursing diagnosis. I do believe APN roles will became more standardized as the need for APN’s increases. According to Lathrop and Hodnicki (2014) if the Conesus Model for APRN Regulation were to be used then standardization for all APRN licensure, accreditation, certification, and education would be done through the legislation.Nurse Practitioners currently receive their credentialing by five different bodies dependent on the area of interest. These are the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Program, American Nurses Credentialing Center, American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, and Orthopaedic Nurses Certification Board (Watson & Hillman, 2010).

According to Hamric, Hanson, Tracy, and O’Grady, (2014) specialty nursing practice is nursing focused on a specific field where as “advanced practice nursing reflects concentrated knowledge in a specialty that offers the opportunity for expanded  and autonomous practice based on broader practical and theoretical knowledge base” (p. 113). Specialty nursing practices obtain their training through on the job training and/or their health care institutions through certification versus advanced practice nursing (APN) obtain their training through a formal educational graduate level program (Hamric et al., 2014). Watson & Hillman (2010) reported the required education level of an APN was going to be doctorate by 2015. Here we are in 2017 and it is still that of a Masters level.

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I  believe APN’s will be required to have a Doctorate level of education in the near future due to the evolving health care needs of our population as well as due the increase in legal liability. Since the passage of The Affordable Care Act the need for Advanced Practice Registered Nurse with a Doctor of Nursing Practice has increased due to preventive health focus (Lathrop & Hodnicki, 2014). As we are all aware APN’s have historically been focused on primary care which puts us as the leader in this shift in health care. I believe this because he start as registered nurses and provided that direct patient care only as nurses we follow the treatment plan developed by the primary care provider and now as APN’s we can develop the treatment plan.


Hameric, A.B., Hanson, C.M., Tracy, M. F., & O’Grady, E. T. (2014). Advanced practice nursing: an integrative approach. St. Louis, MO: Elsevier

Lathrop, B., & Hodnicki, D. R. (2014). The Affordable Care Act: Primary Care and the Doctor of Nursing Practice Nurse. Online Journal Of Issues In Nursing, 19(2), 7.

Watson, E., & Hillman, H. (2010). Advanced practice registered nursing: licensure, education, scope of practice, and liability issues. Journal Of Legal Nurse Consulting, 21(3), 25-29.