New Jersey Board of Nursing

Advanced Practice Nurse in New Jersey require a certification through New Jersey board of Nursing. An APN in New Jersey has prescriptive authority and is required to have joint protocol with a collaborating physician who is licensed in NJ prior to prescribing any medication or medical advice (NJconjumeraffaira.gov, 2021). Requirements for the application for the APN certification from NJ board of Nursing required Master level program for Nurse Practitioner, pass the highest level national advanced practice nurse examination in the area of clinical specialty, proof of current New Jersey registered professional nurse license in good standing. New Jersey is not a full practice authority state and the requirement for APN to have joint protocol with physician limits their ability to adequately care for their patients and also has costly price tags. Requirements for APNs to have joint protocol is a restricting access to care and a barrier to the APN providing care. In rural areas, there is a shortage of physicians and nearly 80 million people live in health professional shortage areas where there are more than 3500 patients for a single primary care provider (AANP, 2020). Nurse Practitioners are a key to providing better health care to rural areas and making a big difference in these communities. NPs are trained at graduate level to evaluate patients, diagnose illness and prescribe medications to patients. New Jersey lawmakers have considered legislation that allows nurse to prescribe independently but such legislation is not passed. The New jersey State Nurses Association (NJSNA) is advocating to increase consumer access to health care by eliminating the collaborating agreement between an advanced practice nurse and physician (NJSNA, 2019).  NJ prescriptive authority when prescribing controlled substances requires collaboration with a physician for prescriptive authority privileges and NP must consult the supervisory physicians when prescribing controlled substances and the NP must complete education in pharmacology related to controlled substances. NPs are recognized in NJ state policy as primary care provider and involves the provision of primary care including internal medicine, family medicine, geriatric care, pediatric care or obstetrical/ gynecological care (NCSL, 2021). Access to NJPMP database is granted to prescribers who are licensed by the State of NJ and are in good standing with their respective license boards. To obtain access to NJPMP, prescribers and pharmacists must first register with PMP AWARxE. NP can apply for DEA number by applying online at the U.S Department of Justice website or by calling the DEA headquarters registration toll free number and request a physical copy of the order form. NPs in NJ required physician involvement for prescriptive authority and NPs can prescribe schedule II Controlled substances and schedule III-V controlled substances. Additional requirements for NP prescriptive authority include 39 hours in pharmacology and 6 contact hours in pharmacology related to controlled substances to become licensed

References:

New Jersey division of consumer affairs (2021). Advanced Practice Nurse Certification. Retrieved from www.njconsumeraffairs.gov

 NJSNA (2019). NJ Nurses fight for full practice authority to increase patient access to care. Retrieved from www.njsna.org

NCLS (2021). New Jersey Scope of Practice Policy- State overview. Retrieved from www.scopeofpracticepolicy.org

American medical Association (2021). State Law Chart: Nurse Practitioner Prescriptive Authority. Retrieved from www.ama-assn.org

I agree with you that Nurse Practitioners are a key to providing better health care to rural areas where there is a shortage. This shortage means no prevention, screening, immunizations, or basic care for infections and sicknesses, and patients in rural areas are hit especially hard. If we stay on the same trajectory, the problem will only get worse. Aging baby boomers are snowballing into the largest patient population in history, and while their health care needs spike, the number of physicians practicing is falling nearly as quickly. The net result is a provider population that is simply not big enough, or geographically dispersed enough, to handle mounting patient demand especially in psychiatry (APNA, 2020). Compared to other primary care disciplines, NPs are most likely to practice in rural communities. Indeed, 18% of NPs practice in communities of fewer than 25,000 residents. In states with both a favorable regulatory environment and a large percentage of rural residents, NPs are significantly more likely to practice in rural settings. The five states with the greatest reported percentage of NPs in rural areas are Vermont (56%), South Dakota (50%), Wyoming (43%), Montana (40%) and Maine (39%). By contrast, Texas has both great expanses of rural communities and restrictive supervisory requirements; only 13% of Texas NPs practice in communities of fewer than 25,000 residents (AANP, 2020).

                                              References

American Association of Nurse Practitioners. (2020). State practice environment. https://www.aanp.org/advocacy/state/state-practice-environment

American Psychiatric Nurses Association (2020). Psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner competencies. https://www.apna.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageID=3849&activateFull=true

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