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The consensus model for regulation of APRNs: Implications for nurse practitioners

Rounds, Linda R. PhD, RN, FNP, FAANP1; Zych, Jolene J. MS, PhD, WHNP-BC2; Mallary, Laura L. MA1

Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners: April 2013 - Volume 25 - Issue 4 - p 180–185
doi: 10.1111/j.1745-7599.2013.00812.x

Purpose To examine the Consensus Model for APRN Regulation as a proposed solution to simplify and unify regulation of advanced nursing practice with respect to licensure, certification, accreditation, and educational standards.

Data sources Policy statements and reports issued by national organizations of nursing professionals and discussion within the scholarly literature provided an overview of regulatory differences among the 50 U.S. states, their impacts on advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) practice, and discussion of the Consensus Model as a potential solution.

Conclusions Major organizations of nursing professionals have endorsed the Consensus Model, indicating the importance of this significant step toward standards and consistent quality in APRN education and practice. Diverse regulatory criteria, such as variable accreditation standards, disparate certification and licensing requirements, inconsistent population foci, and scopes of practice, represent barriers to optimized APRN function within today's complex healthcare system and, ultimately, reduced access to safe, quality care for patients.

Implications for practice The Consensus Model for APRN Regulation promises to unify APRN education, practice, and licensure, promoting greater mobility among nursing professionals. Elimination of inconsistencies in APRN licensure, education, certification, and accreditation requirements will promote greater value and mobility for the APRN within the healthcare system.

1 School of Nursing, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas,

2 Texas Board of Nursing, Austin, Texas,


(Advanced Practice Nursing Consultant)

(Technical Writer)

Received: May 2012; accepted: October 2012

Correspondence Linda R. Rounds, PhD, RN, FNP, FAANP, School of Nursing, University of Texas Medical Branch, 301 University Blvd., Galveston, TX 77555-1029. Tel: 409-772-8280 (work); Fax: 409-772-3770; E-mail:

© 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Inc
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