Report: Expand nurses' scope of practice

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The healthcare industry's restrictions on scope of practice, policy and reimbursement-related limitations have undermined nurses' efforts, according to a new report.

Nurses are the healthcare providers with the most patient contact and demand for their services is growing rapidly. Yet, according to the Institute of Medicine and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, their voices are often left out of the policy-forming process.

The two organizations recently held a joint panel discussion to examine the way nurses' roles will change in the future as dozens of healthcare reforms are put in place.

The panel's 600-page report, titled “The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health,” offers recommendations for changes.

“Producing a healthcare system that delivers the right care—quality care that is patient-centered, accessible, evidence-based and sustainable—at the right time will require transforming the work environment, scope of practice, education and numbers of America's nurses,” report authors noted.

The panel was to meet again in December after press deadline to discuss implementation of the guidelines.
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