APRN Prescribing in Georgia: An Evolving Environment

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Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners




Purpose: While it took over 20 years to achieve legal authority to write prescriptions in Georgia, effective July 1, 2006, nearly 40% of Georgia advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) are still not using this method of prescribing. An investigation was conducted to identify the current practice environment and barriers to practice in order to identify causes for this lack of participation and implications for advanced practice nursing and the provision of health care.

Data sources: A survey of APRNs in Georgia in 2011 describes demographics, practice environment, APRN education, barriers to practice, and prescribing activity.

Conclusions: Georgia is one of the most restrictive states in terms of APRN scope of practice, and has an anticipated escalation of underserved population with health disparities demanding attention.

Implications for practice: Many of the identified barriers are common to APRNs nationwide, but specific barriers to Georgia APRNs are being strategically addressed. Policy changes are recommended to enhance the practice environment of APRNs to support the delivery of quality care.