Sample Nursing Paper on Professional Nursing and State-Level Regulations

Introduction

Nursing regulation is the governmental oversight provided for nursing practice in each state. Nursing can have adverse implication on the general public if practiced by incompetent professionals. Thus, boards of nursing (BONs) at state level regulate nursing practice to help protect the health of the public and improve healthcare delivery by licensing qualified and competent health practitioners. All BONs across the U.S. are tasked with evaluating applications for nurse licensure, issuing and renewing nursing licenses, and taking appropriate actions on health practitioners who demonstrate unethical behaviors in nursing practice. States including Maryland and Michigan have requirements for licensing advanced practice registered nurses (APRN), determining the legal scope of practice for the APRNs, and establishing the APRNs’ roles and titles.

Regulations for Nursing Practice in Maryland/Michigan and Application to APRNs

Maryland and Michigan have come up with requirements to regulate nursing practice at the state level to ensure that qualified and competent health practitioners are recruited into nursing practice to improve the quality of healthcare delivery. Nevertheless, nursing regulations in these states differ in some aspects. First is the scope of practice for the advanced practice registered nurses. Maryland grants APRNs full practice authority, which implies that the state’s practice and licensure laws permit these professionals to independently perform various medical processes, such as evaluating patients, making diagnoses, interpreting lab and other diagnostic tests, and prescribe medications and other treatment measures (Rapsilber, 2015). On the other hand, Michigan limits APRNs’ practice authority. Some of restricted APRN responsibilities include prescribing certain medications and completing particular medical procedures (Harris, 2017). Michigan’s nursing regulations have granted APRNS prescriptive authority only for schedule II-V controlled substances (“Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Requirements in Michigan,” n.d.). The state’s practice and licensure regulations also require APRNs to enter into collaborative agreements with physicians to complete particular medical procedures.

Maryland’s and Michigan’s nursing requirements also differ in terms of licensing process. In Maryland, for an individual to practice nursing within the state, he or she must be licensed. The state’s practice and licensure laws require having graduate education at the master’s level or above for licensing for nursing practice. Additionally, the state’s nursing regulations outline that the educational program must be recognized by the Maryland Board of Nursing and accredited by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council of Higher Education Accreditation. The state’s board of nursing further requires that an individual be certified in either of the four recognized categories, nurse practitioner (NP), certified nurse-midwife (CNM), certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA), and psychiatric mental health clinical nurse specialist (“Become Nurse in Maryland,” 2019). One must then complete an APRN certification application form, which is often processed within four weeks. The state requires that first-time application should be accompanied by a non-refundable fee of $50 and a subsequent one be accompanied by a fee of $25 (“Become Nurse in Maryland,” 2019). Additionally, renewing of a license of nursing practice is done yearly and on the 20th day of the month of an APRN’s birthday (“Become Nurse in Maryland,” 2019). An APRN must complete a renewal of the license of practice online.

Michigan’s state practice and licensure laws require APRNs to obtain a master’s degree from a nationally certified institution. The state’s BON mandates that nurses hold any of these titles: nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, and nurse anesthetist. Moreover, while applying for nurse specialty education, one must provide a U.S. social security number. The national certification organization, rather than Michigan’s board of nursing ensures that a nurse has met the qualifications for nursing practice and processing of application often takes six to eight weeks after which an individual is informed of his or her status online (“Steps to Becoming an APRN in Michigan,” n.d.). moreover, the fee charged for application of certification is based upon the time an APRN’s Michigan license expires: if an APRN’s license expires within 0-4 months or 13-24 months from the date the nurse filed his or her application, the fee paid to Michigan’s BON is $52 (“Steps to Becoming an APRN in Michigan,” n.d.). If the license expires within 5-12 months, an APRN pays $38 during application for renewal (“Steps to Becoming an APRN in Michigan,” n.d.). The state’s laws require that an APRN’s must be active before he or she renews specialty certification.

How APRNs Can Adhere to the Key Regulations

APRNs can adhere to the above regulations in various ways. For example, they can attain at least a master’s degree and above in a nursing course related to titles, such as nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, and nurse anesthetist. Besides, APRNs can also apply for licenses for nursing practice and renew them within the stipulated time and pay the required fee. Moreover, they can practice within the certified areas of specialty. This implies that nurses can focus only in the medical contexts that they have been granted authority to engage in. For instance, if APRNs have been granted reduced practice authority, they can adhere to the regulation by engaging in practical procedures they been allowed to conduct such as prescription of particular medications.

Conclusion

The boards of nursing (BONs) play critical roles in regulating nursing practice across the country. They help to protect the public’s health and improve the quality of healthcare delivery by licensing qualified and competent nurse practitioners. All states have their nursing practice and licensure laws that help to guide the recruitment of nurses into the profession. Maryland and Michigan have established nursing regulations related to the scope of practice and licensing process of APRNs, to help in the shaping of the U.S health system and improve the quality of healthcare delivery. However, application of those regulations differ across these two states. For instance, applications of the scope of practice differs between the two states, Maryland offers APRNs full practice authority, while Michigan grants APRNs reduced practice authority. APRNs can adhere to this regulation by engaging in medical activities they have been certified.

 

References

Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Requirements in Michigan. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.nursinglicensure.org/np-state/michigan-nurse-practitioner.html

Become Nurse in Maryland Requirements & Licensing. (2019, December 19). Retrieved from https://nursejournal.org/licensing/maryland-nursing-requirements/

Harris, J. L. (2013). Turning health policy into practice: implications for advanced practice registered nurses. Health Policy and Advanced Practice Nursing: Impact and Implications, 13. https://doi.org/10.1891/9780826169457.0002

Rapsilber, L. (2015). Connecticut’s journey to full practice authority. The Journal for Nurse Practitioners11(2), 272-273. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nurpra.2014.10.033

Steps to Becoming an APRN in Michigan. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.graduatenursingedu.org/michigan/