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Issues up close

Advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) are increasing in number and in value to the healthcare delivery system. As more people have access to health care, expanded opportunities for APRNs bring up questions about scope of practice. “Should I do this?” is the question we hear most often from APRNs.

For two categories of APRNs—certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs) and certified nurse midwives (CNMs)—there is little confusion about scope of practice regarding care settings and patient age limits. CRNAs administer anesthesia and provide pain-care management to patients of all ages in hospitals, surgical centers, and outpatient settings. CNMs provide health care services to women from adolescence to beyond menopause. CNMs also care for normal newborns during the first 28 days of life and treat male partners for sexually transmitted infections. Read more