Strategic Goals: Education, Advocacy, and Workforce Development
Elizabeth Welch-Carre, EdD MS APRN NNP-BC, NANNP Council Chair
It was 34 years ago that the National Association of Neonatal Nurses (NANN) was established. In 2007, a group of pioneering neonatal nurse practitioners (NNP) decided to create the National Association of Neonatal Nurse Practitioners (NANNP), a division of NANN that focuses on the specific needs of the advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) and, in particular, those of the NNP. NANNP has remained a division of NANN because collectively we are stronger and more able to advance the profession of neonatal nursing.
NANNP continues to be the voice for NNPs. Our primary focus areas are advocacy, education, and workforce development. An example of NANNP’s advocacy efforts was demonstrated in the NANNP Business Meeting at the most recent NANN Annual Conference in Anaheim. The NANNP Council presented on the ongoing national discussion about the Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) as entry into practice for the nurse practitioner. Although there are some professional organizations that have decided to move forward with endorsing the DNP as entry into practice, there is no concrete national plan to date about how this will be achieved in light of faculty and clinical placement shortages. Furthermore, the certifying bodies for nurse practitioners have not yet changed the level of education required in order to sit for the certification exam. The NANNP Council will continue to engage in this discussion with the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculty and the Licensing, Accreditation, Certification, and Education coalition. To further our advocacy and influence in health policy, the NANNP Council also has a liaison to the Health Policy and Advocacy Committee.
In addition to our advocacy efforts, NANNP provides education to its members in several ways. Currently, a group of NNPs is working with the American Academy of Pediatrics on a new hypotension clinical report. Members of NANNP are also a part of a multidisciplinary team to update neonatal nutrition guidelines. Moreover, NANNP has a representative at the Research Institute Steering Committee and the Education Strategic Coordinating Committee so we can encourage NNP research and provide quality education opportunities for APRNs. The APRN Summit also will continue to be a part of the NANN Annual Conference.
Workforce development for NNPs is multifaceted. This is reflected in the 2016 NNP Workforce Survey published by NANNP in the October 2017 issue of Advances in Neonatal Care and is available as a white paper on the NANN website. NANNP will continue to survey NNPs periodically about total compensation, workplace environment, and career satisfaction. We also will continue to recognize the contributions that NNPs have made to their profession through the NNP Excellence Awards. We encourage you to nominate your peers for these prestigious awards. Additionally, NANNP appreciates that workforce development often requires opportunities to be a part of a project or task force, and so NANN and NANNP sends out calls for volunteers periodically. I encourage individuals to volunteer in order to gain new skills in leadership and teamwork.
I look forward to working with the NANNP Council over the next two years. The council has diverse knowledge and interests and I expect that a lot will be accomplished. I hope to hear members to learn more about how NANNP can meet the needs of the professional APRN.