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certification, competency assessment, continuing competency, public policy initiatives



  1. Burns, Betty BA, CAE


State boards of nursing, national nursing certification organizations, and employers have made a concerted effort to identify a means to assess continuing competency of nurses. In the past decade, there has been a heightened focus on patient safety initiatives, the need for greater transparency in the regulatory process, and consumer demand for development of methods to determine the ongoing qualifications of healthcare professionals. This article will discuss the public policy origins of the continuing competency issue, the potential complications of implementation, identification of some current organizational efforts, and what future implications the issue of continuing competency holds for the healthcare community, nursing profession, and the individual nurse.