A scoping review of the progress of the evolution of the Doctor of Nursing Practice in the USA to inform consideration of future transformation of Nurse Practitioner education in Australia
Cashin, A in press, 'A scoping review of the progress of the evolution of the Doctor of Nursing Practice in the USA to inform consideration of future transformation of Nurse Practitioner education in Australia', Collegian.
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Background: In 2004 a consensus was reached through a vote of membership of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing to move Nurse Practitioner education from the masters to the doctoral level by 2015. Aim: To determine progress to meet the goal of moving towards doctoral level education for American Nurse Practitioners and identify the associated discourse. Method: A scoping review was undertaken to dertermine the progress towards the goal of the of moving from the Master of Science Nursing to the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree as the pointfrom which Nurse Practitioner certification and licensure can be applied for in the USA, the reported outcomes resulting from the introduction of the Doctor of Nursing Practice and the evolution of the discourse re the design and intent and of the Doctor of Nursing Practice. Findings: There has been ongoing evolution in the vision of the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree since 2004. Whilst there have been challenges, support for continued development and implementation of the Doctor of Nursing Practice is strong. Discussion: These findings are considered with regard to informing potential future directions for Nurse Practitioner education in Australia. Conclusion: It is timely in Australia to consider development of a post endorsement bespoke Professional Doctorate for Nurse Practitioners. To address the issue of course load in Nurse Practitioner Masters Programmes the discipline should work towards being recognized as able to offer an extended masters degree for Nurse Practitioners. Australian Nurse Practitioner faculty should come together as a group to consult on development of Nurse Practitioner education in Australia.