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Nurse Practitioners (NPs) are excited about the first face-to-face American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) conference since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Clinical Consultant spoke with AANP President April N. Kapu, DNP, APRN, ACNP-BC, FAANP, FCCM, FAAN about her favorite presentations from 350 educational sessions at AANP 2022, the program offering mental health services to NP, and legislative issues, which NPs speak at the conference.

“We are well aware of the fact that the last 2 and a half years have been very demanding on nurses, as well as on all health care providers,” said Dr. Capu. One of the key moments of the conference is the launch N Power a program “where our NP members can get immediately available mental health services that are huge.” The NPower program also offers many resources for social, financial, professional, environmental, intellectual, physical and spiritual well-being.

In addition, “we celebrate the fact that we are the most in-demand health care profession, according to US News and World Report. In 2022, this occupation has grown to over 355,000 NPs in the US. billion visits to nurse practitioners were made in the past year. In addition, the number of states that have given NP full authority to practice has reached a breaking point of 26 states plus DC, with New York and Kansas contributing to those wins in recent months.


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Brief overview of the sessions

Dr. Kapu has a list of presentations she would like to attend, among them session Physician Health Optimization: Evidence-Based Strategies That Work! Keith Gavlick, DNP, APRN-CNP, FAANP, FNAP; Bernadette Mazurek Melnik, PhD, APRN-CNP, FAANP, FNAP, FAAN; and Alice M. Teal, DNP, APRN-CNP, NC-BC, FAAN. The speakers will discuss “what can we do as a healthcare system, as an organization and of course as physicians, to improve our infrastructure in our various work environments so that we have an optimal environment for health and wellness,” said Dr. Kapu.

She also looks forward to a session led by the AANP Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee, during which speakers will discuss what the AANP is doing to promote diversity, health, equity and inclusion in the organization, as well as in the health care industry in general. The session is called “Race or Racism?”. Tools, Inequity & Outcomes and speakers included Leta M. Joseph, DNP, AGPCNP-BC, FFNMRCSI; Sheldon D. Fields, PhD, RN, FNP-BC, AACRN, FAANP, FNAP, FAAN; and Hermina Emily R. Rio, DNSc, CPH, APRN, GNP, BC, FCN. Sandra Davis, PhD, DPM, ACNP-BC, FAANP moderates the session.

Dr. Capu also presents a session titled “The Value of NP: Know Why and Know Your Value”, in which she will talk about strategies for determining the impact of the role of NP and the value that NP brings to healthcare, as well as in improving patient outcomes. “Nurse practitioners need to know their value,” Dr. Kapu said. She and co-host Jennifer Rogers, CNO, will discuss various scenarios to help NPs highlight the value they bring to patient care.

How’s the moral?

“Walking through the conference room now, it seems like everyone just got in,” Dr. Kapu said. “They really want to come back and go to educational classes and enjoy the opportunity to grow professionally. They talk, they communicate. We see this connection.”

“We have been waiting for this for so long, and now, finally, we are here and enjoy communication with each other and all the support that surrounds us,” said Dr. Capu.

What issues do IRs discuss at the AANP conference?

“Everyone thinks about mental health,” Dr. Kapu said. In the conference rooms, IRs talk about their own experiences, as well as their concern for their teams, she said. “Changes are needed in terms of workforce development, workforce support programs for health and wellness, and support for those systems and organizations that create a healthy work environment for NPs,” she said.

The second hot topic is the positive results that are already being felt in the states that have granted full rights to the practice of NP. These states are seeing a growing workforce, more IRs working in rural and underserved areas, and a reduction in health care disparities, she said.

AANP focuses on research and education

In addition to protecting full and direct access to NP care, expanding research and education among NPs is a key goal of the AANP. “We want to continue research and develop evidence for the impact of NP treatment in terms of patient outcomes.” Another current research priority at the AANP is to examine the evidence for the treatment of long-term symptoms of COVID.

AANP is also focused on developing and creating opportunities for NPs as clinicians and educators, as well as in non-traditional roles such as chief executive officers and chief nurses. “We want to provide these opportunities for leadership development,” said Dr. Capu.

Recipients of the award

AANP National Leadership reward The winners for 2022 were announced at the conference. Elizabeth McDaniel, MBA, MSN, FNP-C, was honored with the Towers Pinnacle Award for her strength and leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic as she pioneered innovative ways to ensure patients have access to quality healthcare and combat physician burnout. McDaniel has been instrumental in developing opportunities to advance the role of the NP through practice, education, advocacy and leadership. She has worked to remove barriers at the local, state and national levels.

Susan Kendig, JD, WHNP-BC, FAANP, will receive the Sharp Cutting Edge Award. Kendig was the first director of women’s health policy for the National Association of Nurse Practitioners and was a leading voice among women’s health NPs. Kendig has promoted prevention and maternal health and has often been the only NP working in national multidisciplinary health policy task forces and coalitions.

The 2022 AANP National Conference is being held June 21-26, 2022 in Orlando, Florida and sessions will be available. on the fly also.

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