This year we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the nurse practitioner movement. In 1965, our nation experienced sweeping social and healthcare reforms including the signing of the Voting Rights Act into law, the launch of Medicare and Medicaid, and the first nurse practitioner training program established by pediatrician Henry K. Silver and public health nurse Loretta Ford at the University of Colorado.
A number of medical professional groups including the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) have gone on record to state that physicians should lead all PCMHs. As patient advocates, I believe we must challenge their claim. In today’s blog, I provide rationale for this challenge and encourage you to let your voice be heard on this issue by submitting a comment to my post.
It’s national Nurses Week! From May 6 – May 12, we honor nurses across all specialties and all areas of practice. The week culminates on the birthday of the founder of modern nursing, Florence Nightingale, and in her spirit, we celebrate the dedication of all nurses and advanced practice nurses to providing the highest quality care to their patients. You now have the opportunity to celebrate your mentor through NAPNAP's Mentors Matter program.
SIG membership is a valuable extension of your NAPNAP membership. Special interest groups serve as a forum to share interests and ideas with like-minded APRNs and give you an environment to discuss challenges and goals in your common specialty.
One sure sign that spring is upon us is NAPNAP’s annual Day on the Hill event. This year, 20 NAPNAP members including six chosen NAPNAP Advocacy Scholars, met in Washington, D.C. on Monday evening and Tuesday, March 30th and 31st, to advocate for child health issues and removal of barriers from APRN practice. It was an exciting event and many valuable visits were made to Congressional offices and House and Senate Committee offices on behalf of children and their families.
It’s time to get out the vote and raise your voice! NAPNAP’s national election kicks off March 2. By now you should have all received an email from Immediate Past President Mikki Meadows-Oliver introducing election season and providing details on your voting credentials.
This is an election year of exciting changes and forward progress for our organization for two key reasons.
For many states, this time of year brings the start of a new state legislative session. I just returned from presenting at the Tennessee Action Coalition’s APRN Legislative Boot Camp. It was an exciting day and the APRNs of Tennessee are gearing up to bring full practice authority legislation to their state. I know that many of you and your advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) colleagues are also engaged in efforts to either introduce or continue work on bills before your state legislatures to reduce or eliminate barriers to APRN practice.
NAPNAP is proud to have over 1300 student members in our organization, and we want to make certain that those of you who are students know what your benefits are and maximize your membership. The Affordable Care Act and other changes in today’s health care have created an increased demand for all of us as pediatric care providers. Student members are a valuable asset to our association because you are the future PNPs who will carry NAPNAP forward into our next decade. You will fill the need for quality pediatric care for our nation’s children.
By now, you should have received your registration brochure for NAPNAP’s 2015 conference, Advancing Pediatrics: Empowering Today’s and Tomorrow’s Leaders. I cannot believe how fast the time has flown since we last gathered in Boston! This year’s conference is shaping up to be sensational. Our home for the week will be Caesars Palace in sunny Las Vegas, the Entertainment Capital of the World! It will be a warm retreat for those of us surviving the winter in colder climates. There is so much to see and do in Vegas.
On behalf of NAPNAP’s Executive Board and the national office staff, I wish all of you and your loved ones a happy day of giving thanks and spending time with family and friends.
In my President’s Message for the November/December issue of the Journal of Pediatric Health Care, I discussed how this holiday time of the year tends to bring into focus a sense of gratitude for the gifts we’ve been given, as well as the need to share our gifts with others. In keeping with the spirit of the season, I have three questions to ask you:
Next week, November 9 – 15, is National Nurse Practitioner Week! It is time for all of us to celebrate our professional accomplishments and raise awareness of the extraordinary contributions that NPs make to the health of millions of Americans.
The midterm elections are Tuesday, November 4. As nurse practitioners, we are committed patient advocates. Voting is one of the most important ways we can advocate for our patients, profession and community. It is critical that you get out and vote for federal, state and local candidates who support the issues most important to advancing child health. It is also critical that you make informed decisions and tell your family, friends and colleagues about APRN friendly candidates!