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South Dakota Becomes 22nd State to Enact Full Practice Authority for Nurse Practitioners

Thursday, February 23, 2017  
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Today, South Dakota became the 22nd state – plus DC – to enact full practice authority for NPs. Governor Dennis Daugaard (R) signed the bill after it was passed unanimously 35-to-0 in the South Dakota Senate and 62-to-2 in the South Dakota House.


South Dakota’s progress extends the steady drumbeat of states adopting this common sense policy. Maryland also joined the list recently. The American Association of Nurse Practitioners map of state practice environments is here.


Pennsylvania’s version of NP reform, Senate Bill 25, was introduced last week by Sen. Camera Bartolotta. State Rep. Jesse Topper is seeking cosponsors for a House version.


South Dakota’s new law requires nurse practitioners to complete 1,040 hours under existing mandates – in addition to the Master’s or PhD, plus national certification already required of every NP nationwide.


Pa. Senate Bill 25 would require NPs to complete 3,600 hours AND three years under the existing mandate, making it the strictest full practice authority legislation in the entire country.


A wide range of Pennsylvania advocates from across the ideological spectrum have endorsed SB25, including:


  • AARP Pennsylvania
  • Commonwealth Foundation
  • Hospital and Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania
  • Pennsylvania Health Access Network
  • Pennsylvania Rural Health Association


“I am so excited for our colleagues and South Dakota. I hope Pennsylvania joins the growing list of states that enable nurse practitioners to serve patients to the full extent of our education and training,” said Lorraine Bock, DNP, FNP-C, ENP-C, FAANP, President of the Pennsylvania Coalition of Nurse Practitioners. “Patients deserve reform that improves health care quality, increases access, and lowers costs.”


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