Who's who in nursing: bringing clarity to the doctor of nursing practice

Nurs Outlook. 2005 Jul-Aug;53(4):173-6. doi: 10.1016/j.outlook.2005.05.007.


Advanced practice nurses across the country are informally learning expanded skills and are assuming significant autonomy. The growing complexity and acuity of care, the aging of the US population, and the dwindling number of primary care physicians all contribute to the need for increased knowledge and practice competency. A formal and standardized educational process leading to a doctoral degree is essential for quality assurance, to clarify and validate authority/responsibility, and to recognize and identify these practitioners. The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DrNP) degree will formalize the acquisition of the knowledge and skills necessary for fully accountable and broader scope clinical nursing practice.

MeSH terms

  • Clinical Competence
  • Education, Nursing, Graduate / standards*
  • Primary Health Care / standards
  • United States