AUSTIN, Texas, Nov. 6, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) is marking Veterans Day, Wednesday, November 11th, by calling for a common sense solution that would immediately improve access to vital health care services for our nation's veterans.
AANP is urging the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Congress to grant full-practice authority to all advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) employed at VA facilities, including its nurse practitioners (NPs), clinical nurse specialists, nurse anesthetists and nurse midwives.
"On behalf of the men and women who have bravely served our country in uniform, we ask our Congressional leaders and Secretary McDonald to fully utilize the 4,800 NPs who work across VA settings," said AANP president Cindy Cooke, DNP, FNP-C, FAANP, a family nurse practitioner who spent twelve years providing primary care services to active duty and retired military personnel and their families. "With full-practice authority, these expertly prepared, high-quality clinicians can play an even greater role meeting the health care needs of veterans nationwide."
NPs have become an increasingly vital segment of today's health care workforce and represent one of the fastest growing professions in health care today. With master's and often doctoral-level education, they provide primary, acute and specialty health services, including mental health care, serving patients from all socioeconomic backgrounds, and across both urban and rural settings.