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hospice, palliative care, Practice nursing, nursing certification



  1. Clark, J. Michael III MS
  2. Berry, Patricia H. PhD, APRN, GNP-BC, ACHPN
  3. McSteen, Kerstin MS, RN, ACHPN
  4. Fabrey, Lawrence J. PhD


The purpose of this study was to identify the responsibilities of advanced practice nurses in hospice and palliative care to develop the specifications for a certification examination that is valid and reflects current practice. In collaboration with Applied Measurement Professionals, Inc, an advisory committee worked to conduct the activities necessary to identify hospice and palliative advanced practice nurses' responsibilities. Approximately 22% of the advanced practice nurses holding current certification in advanced practice hospice and palliative nursing completed a practice analysis survey. Application of the decision rules resulted in the retention of 196 tasks, which were subsequently used to revise the specifications of the certification examination. The advanced practice nursing roles and responsibilities in the specialty of hospice and palliative care were validated by this study. The study also demonstrated sufficient similarities between clinical nurse specialists and nurse practitioners to warrant one specialty certification examination.