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Advanced practice nursing: Shaping health through policy

Kostas-Polston, Elizabeth A. PhD, APRN, WHNP-BC, FAANP1; Thanavaro, Joanne DNP, APRN, ANP-BC, GNP-BC, AGACNP-BC, DCC, FAANP2; Arvidson, Cathy PhD, APRN, FNP-BC, FAANP3; Taub, Leslie-Faith Morritt PhD, ANP-C, GNP-BC, CDE, CBSM, FAANP4 on behalf of the FAANP Health Policy Work Group

Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners: January 2015 - Volume 27 - Issue 1 - p 11–20
doi: 10.1002/2327-6924.12192

Purpose: To highlight the importance of advanced practice nurses (APNs) becoming politically engaged as key to promoting the healthcare interests of patients, communities and the profession and to offer specific strategies on how to become politically competent.

Data sources: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, CINAHL, PubMed.

Conclusions: APNs must come to see political engagement as a professional obligation and health policy as something that they can shape rather than something that happens to them.

Implications for practice: The overall goal of healthcare reform is the provision of quality, safe and cost-effective healthcare for all Americans. APNs are graduate prepared clinicians that focus on health and illness management and are strategically positioned to lead the way in shaping and implementing health policy priorities.

1Department of Otolaryngology/Head & Neck Surgery, School of Medicine, Saint Louis University, St. Louis, Missouri

2Saint Louis University School of Nursing, St. Louis, Missouri

3Idaho State University, Pocatello, Idaho

4New York University, New York, New York

Received 14 September 2014; Accepted 21 September 2014

Published online 25 November 2014.

Correspondence Joanne L. Thanavaro, DNP, APRN, ANP-BC, GNP-BC, AGACNP-BC, DCC, FAANP, School of Nursing, St. Louis University, 3525 Caroline Avenue, Room 225, St. Louis, MO, 63104. Tel: 314–977–8908; Fax: 314–977–8949; E-mail:

© 2015 American Association of Nurse Practitioners
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