1. Section Editor(s): Newland, Jamesetta PhD, RN, FNP-BC, FAANP, DPNAP

Article Content

The National Conference for Nurse Practitioners (NCNP), held in Chicago from April 23 to 26, 2014, once again confirmed what we as nurse practitioners (NPs) and other advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) have always known-we are awesome! Carol Thompson, PhD, DNP, ACNP, FNP, FCCM, FAANP, from the University of Tennessee at Memphis, proclaimed it with exactness in her keynote address: "Awesome Practiced Daily!" She presented what she called the "5 Cs of Awesomeness": competence, caring, coordination, collaboration, and compensation. Dr. Thompson also added a sixth C-center-to encourage NPs to keep their lives balanced. Merriam-Webster defines awesome as "causing feelings of fear and wonder; causing feelings of awe."

Figure. No caption a... - Click to enlarge in new windowFigure. No caption available.

Dr. Thompson's motivational style expanded upon that definition and was a great way to open the conference. Speakers throughout continued to offer evidence-based, practical, clinical information to NPs who are on the ground running every day, striving to improve patient outcomes. Approximately 1,200 attendees heard about the latest explanations of disease processes, diagnostic reasoning and treatment guidelines, pharmacologic management, and alternative/complementary therapies. I left the conference feeling like every NP's practice is awesome. If you missed NCNP, start making plans to attend next year's conference (visit


The Nurse Practitioners Modernization Act

Of course, NPs can never come together without conversations about policy and advocacy. Where relevant, implications of the Affordable Care Act for NP practice were incorporated into presentations. Many speakers highlighted access to healthcare and constraints on practice. It is because we are so awesome that we prompt scrutiny from some physician colleagues and others on a daily basis. Much of what we see in the media focuses on the challenges NPs face in trying to achieve full practice authority.


After what seems like 100 years, on April 1, 2014, the Nurse Practitioners Modernization Act was passed in New York, eliminating the requirement for a written practice agreement between experienced NPs (more than 3,600 hours of practice) and a physician. Although compromises were necessary to move the legislation forward, the final decision represents a major step in the right direction. NPs must still demonstrate collaborative practice; however, no documents have to be signed or filed with the State Education Department. In addition, creative ways to meet this condition are already being proposed, and similar scenarios are occurring all over the country, championed by awesome NP leaders and supporters. The law will take effect on January 1, 2015.


Our growing field

Loretta Ford, EdD, PNP, FAAN, co-founder of the first NP educational program, keynoted at the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties annual meeting in April. The title of her address was, "Fasten your seatbelts, it's going to be a bumpy ride!" How accurately that phrase portrays the NP movement! Dr. Ford embodies all that is awesome. Our numbers speak for themselves. The American Association of Nurse Practitioners estimates that there are over 189,000 NPs practicing in the United States today and project growth to 244,000 by 2025. NPs have prescriptive authority in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Polls show that two out of three patients support legislation for greater access to NP services. Our patients can be our strongest advocates.


Awesome practiced daily

For me, April was full of events that reminded me why I entered nursing and why I went on to advanced practice. But all the personal enrichment during that month took me away from my patients for a few weeks. When I returned, as usual, they asked me if I had enjoyed my vacation. When I indicated where I had been, they expressed interest in what I had learned, what was coming down the line for healthcare (they think I have some inside scoop), and how it all might affect our relationship. My patients affirm me, so I will continue to strive for "awesome practiced daily."


Jamesetta Newland, PhD, RN, FNP-BC, FAANP, DPNAP

Figure. No caption a... - Click to enlarge in new windowFigure. No caption available.

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF [email protected]