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Capitol Connection APRN VA Special Edition

Title VIII Nursing Workforce Reauthorization Act
December 13, 2016

VA Extends Full Practice Authority to APRNs
To expand veterans’ access to quality health care and help reduce wait times, the US Department of Veterans Affairs will publish a final rule on December 14, 2016 extending what it defines as full practice authority to three of the four types of advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) serving in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA).

The three APRN roles (nurse practitioners, certified nurse-midwives, and clinical nurse specialists) have the ability to practice to the full extent of their education and training, and certification when acting within the scope of their VA employment, regardless of state restrictions that limit such full practice authority. The final rule does include an exception for applicable state restrictions on the authority to prescribe and administer controlled substances.

Unfortunately certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs) were not granted authority in the final rule. The VA has provided an additional 30-day comment period on full practice authority for CRNAs.

The NLN submitted comments earlier this year in support of granting authority to all four APRN roles in the VA proposed rule.

The next edition of the Capitol Connection will be published on January 3, 2017.

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