Advanced practice nursing is a growing and evolving career in nursing. Understanding the definition and the core roles of an Advanced Practice Nurse is imperative. According to the Consensus Model, “Advanced practice registered nurses are licensed independent practitioners who are expected to practice within standards established or recognized by a licensing body. ” (Consensus Model for APRN Regulation: Licensure, Accreditation, Certification & Education, 2008) There are several licensing bodies that regulate the requirements for Advanced Practice Nurses.
In this paper I will be comparing the regulations between the New Jersey Board of Nursing and the Consensus Model for APRN regulations.
New Jersey Board of Nursing regulates the required certification requirements as well as the permitted duties of an APN in the state of New Jersey. The Consensus Model for Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Regulation provides a more detailed overview of the definition and the different scopes of practice of Advanced Practice Registered Nursing. These two models share similarities and differences in their guidelines for Advanced Practice Registered Nurses.
The Consensus Model for APRN Regulation is a resource and document used by several organizations including schools, nursing professional associations, and certification agencies to provide a unified understanding of an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse(“Consensus Model for APRN Regulation,” n. d. ). The goal of this project is to offer a better understanding of the role of APRN’s. This model uses four elements to define an APRN and they are Licensure, Accreditation, Certification, and Education.
This model goes further to define APRNs and their scopes of practice by dividing it into the four different types of Advanced Practice Registered Nurses, which are The Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, The Certified Nurse –Midwife, The Clinical Nurse Specialist, and the Certified Nurse Practitioners.
The career of an APN begins with education. Although education is the fourth element in the Consensus Model, it precedes the other elements involved in the preparation and steps in becoming an Advanced Practice Nurse. In the
Consensus Model education is defined as “the formal preparation of APRN’s in graduate degree-granting or post graduate certificate programs” (Consensus Model for APRN Regulation: Licensure, Accreditation, Certification & Education, 2008). This is the process of attending an accredited institution to attain a graduate degree as an APRN. The New Jersey Board of Nursing Laws gives a brief description of the educational requirements for an APN degree. In section 45:11-47 (4), it states that the APN needs to successfully complete an educational program, including pharmacology, approved by the board (“New Jersey Board of Nursing Laws,” 2011).
This is a very limited definition of educational requirements and does not cover the components that are necessary to meet the requirements for certification. However, the Consensus Model formulates guidelines which the institutions must follow in order to meet the educational requirements for an APRN. These guidelines include but are not limited to being accredited by an accrediting organization, ensuring that graduates are eligible to pass the certification exam and making sure the student understands the core APRN roles.
Another element listed on the Consensus Model is licensure which is defined as “the granting of authority to practice. ”(Consensus Model for APRN Regulation: Licensure, Accreditation, Certification & Education , 2008). This process occurs after the Registered Nurse has successfully completed a graduate level program. The requirements for licensure according to the state of New Jersey are listed in section 45:11-47 of the New Jersey Board of Nursing Laws. The regulations listed are based on minimum age requirement, moral character, education and passing of the state board examination.
The Consensus Model focuses on the role of the board of nursing in relation to licensure. The board of nursing under this model will control the licensure of the APRN and only license graduates who meet the board’s set requirements. After reviewing the requirements for licensure listed under both organizations, one can conclude that the N. J. Board of Nursing Law and Consensus Model share similar expectations for licensure. Once the license is obtained and verified the title APN or APRN is given and legally protected. The N.
J. Board of Nursing Laws and the Consensus Model both address titling regulation, which states that an individual can only use the title if they have attained an APN license by the board. According to both regulations, licensure will be given and regulated through the board of nursing. Certification is another core element in the APRN regulatory model. “Certification is a formal process used by a certifying agency to validate, based on predetermined standards an individual’s knowledge, skills and abilities” ( Hanson, 2009).
The Certification requirements listed in N. J. Board of Nursing can be found in the same section as the licensure requirements, section 45:11-47. They are the same aforementioned requirements listed under licensure. The Consensus Model guidelines for certification will,“ follow established certification testing, assess the APRN core and competencies, assess specialty competencies and be accredited by a national certification accreditation body” (Consensus Model for APRN Regulation: Licensure, Accreditation, Certification & Education, 2008).
The basic requirements for certification are the same but the Consensus Model provides a more detailed description while addressing the assessment of the APRNs competencies. Once the certifications are obtained there are also regulations for maintaining certification. The guidelines for maintaining certification are best explained in the N. J. Board of Nursing Law. It states that the advanced practice nurse does not need to repeat the initial certification exam. Instead the applicant is required to provide evidence of completing continuing education requirements.
Once the certification and licensure is achieved the next step for the APRN is understanding their scope of practice. Prescriptive authority and physician collaboration is explained in detail in the N. J. Board of Nursing Laws under section 45:11-49. This section breaks down the duties which APNs are allowed to perform a few of these may include; ordering laboratory and diagnostic test, prescriptive authority, and required pharmacological continuing educations credits.
In contrast, the Consensus Model does not explain the different dynamics of prescriptive authority and mentions that under their regulation APRNs will be able to practice without a collaborating physician. “Boards of nursing will license APRNs as independent practitioners with no regulatory requirements for collaboration, direction or supervision” (Consensus Model for APRN Regulation: Licensure, Accreditation, Certification & Education , 2008)The two regulations differ in this aspect. The Consensus Model is putting an emphasis on autonomy for APRNs and the N. J.
Board of Nursing is creating a more dependent model for APNs. In conclusion, the APN role is guided and regulated by several governing bodies. Each state regulation may differ nationwide. The N. J. Board of Nursing and Consensus Model both offer guidelines which dictate the requirements and expectations for an APN. Based on the information given above it is apparent that there are differences and similarities that exist between both models. The N. J. Board of Nursing would benefit greatly from incorporating the measures used in the Consensus Model to redefine the core roles of an Advanced Practice Nurse.
References: APRN Joint Dialogue Group Report (2008). Consensus Model for APRN Regulation: Licensure, Accreditation, Certification & Education. Consensus Model for APRN Regulation. (2012) Retrieved October 8, 2012, from http://sn. umdnj. edu/consensus/index. html Hanson, C. M. , (2009). Understanding Regulatory, Legal and Credentialing Requirements. In Hamric, A, B. , Spross, J. A. , Hanson, C. M. (Eds. ), Advanced practice nursing:Anintergrative approach (pp. 605-625). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier. New Jersey Board of Nursing Laws . (2011). Retrieved from http://www. njconsumeraffairs. gov/laws/nursinglaws. pdf