(Madison, WI) – The Wisconsin Nurses Association today presented Senator Devin LeMahieu of the 9th Senate District, Oostburg the 2018 WNA “Friend of Nursing” Award. LeMahieu was the lead sponsor of this biennium’s Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Modernization Act Legislation, SB 497. The proposed legislation created licensure for the four categories of advanced practice registered nurses: Certified Nurse Midwives, Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists, Clinical Nurse Specialists, and Nurse Practitioners. He also supported the Nurse Licensure Compact Bill, SB 417 that allows for nurses residing outside the state of Wisconsin to practice in Wisconsin using their RN license from their home state. This creates increase access to RN care and services for Wisconsin’s patients.
“We are so appreciative of the efforts of Senator LeMahieu in sponsoring our legislation. Wisconsin is one of the first states to recognize the critical role of APRNs in providing access to timely, quality and safe patient care. Over the past twenty years Wisconsin has fallen behind other states in further clarifying the responsibility and accountability of the APRN role. This is why our statutes need to be modernized,” states Linda Gobis, RN, MN, JD, President of the Wisconsin Nurses Association.
“As an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse, I appreciate Senator LeMahieu’s support of our practice, his recognition of our graduate level of nursing education, and his understanding of what we bring to the health care setting and to our patient populations,” states Tina Bettin, RN, DNP, APNP, President of WNA’s Nurse Practitioner Forum.
According to the 2016 RN Workforce there are 4,360 Advanced Practice Registered Nurses practicing in Wisconsin. They comprise 6.9 percent of the total RN workforce. The demand for Advanced Practice Registered Nurses in Wisconsin is increasing. They are viewed as key members of the health care delivery system, particularly in those areas of the state where there are physician shortages. They demonstrate high levels of quality outcomes and patient satisfaction.