Medical Associations Challenge Nursing Council
By Joey Berlin


The Texas Medical Association, American Medical Association (AMA), and dozens of other state medical societies are asking the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) to remove or revise parts of an interstate compact that would alter state scope-of-practice laws for advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs).

The APRN Compact, which NCSBN approved in May 2015, allows APRNs to hold one multi-state license with a privilege to practice in other states that participate in the compact. The council says the compact will be implemented when 10 states have enacted corresponding legislation. 

But, as AMA, TMA, and others point out in a letter to NCSBN President Katherine Thomas, sections of the compact “grant prescriptive authority and allow APRNs to practice independent of a supervisory or collaborative relationship with a physician, notwithstanding state law to the contrary.”

“Of the health professional licensure compacts in existence, the APRN Compact is the only compact that changes the health professional’s scope of practice,” says the letter, which was sent last week. “We strongly object to the use of interstate licensure compacts as a mechanism through which to expand scope of practice laws, and call on NCSBN to reconsider inclusion of the relevant sections.”

Many of the medical societies would “consider support of or neutrality on APRN Compact legislation” if NCSBN revises the compact to focus on facilitating license portability for APRNs, the letter adds.

It urges NCSBN to consider this at their annual meeting, which is scheduled for August.

Along with TMA, AMA, and the other state medical societies, a number of specialty societies signed on to the letter, including the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology; the American Academy of Family Physicians; and the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

Last Updated On

May 17, 2018

Originally Published On

May 15, 2018

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Joey Berlin

Associate Editor

(512) 370-1393

Joey Berlin is associate editor of Texas Medicine. His previous work includes stints as a reporter and editor for various newspapers and publishing companies, and he’s covered everything from hard news to sports to workers’ compensation. Joey grew up in the Kansas City area and attended the University of Kansas. He lives in Austin.

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