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A Win for Health Care Access in Kansas

Smiling nurse checks senior Hispanic woman's blood pressure
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Kansans will soon have direct access to primary care from advanced practice registered nurses.

On July 1, 2022, Kansas will become the 26th state in the nation to give advance practice registered nurses (APRN's) authority to practice to the full extent of their education and training. That thanks to a bill passed by the Kansas Legislature and signed by Governor Laura Kelly during the 2022 legislative session.

The legislation eliminates outdated requirements for all APRN's to hold a state-mandated contract with a doctor in order to practice. With the new law, Kansans will gain access to three sets of APRNs: nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists and certified nurse midwives.

Nurse practitioners are registered nurses who have master’s or doctoral level education that prepares them to provide advanced health care services, including primary and preventative care.

Kansas currently ranks 40th in the nation for the number of physicians per 100,000 people.
With the physician shortage hitting Kansas hard - especially in rural areas of the state - nurse practitioners can help fill the gap, providing quality health care for patients in their own communities.

“Nurse practitioners are a vital resource for patients and their family caregivers in our state,” says Glenda DuBoise, state director of AARP Kansas, which serves more than 290,000 members age 50 and older in Kansas. “We commend our elected officials for putting patients first and allowing nurse practitioners to do their jobs by providing health care to Kansans when and where they need it."

Across Kansas, more than 330,000 family caregivers who help their older parents and spouses remain at home, count on the quality health care services provided by nurse practitioners and other advanced practice registered nurses.  Nurse practitioners help care for older Kansans in their homes and communities, keeping them out of costly, taxpayer-funded nursing homes.

Learn more about the law and its impact across the United States from the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action.

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