Across acute care settings, acute care nurse practitioners (ACNPs) provide care to acutely and critically ill patients. In accordance with reductions in residency hours for physicians, there has been a proportional growth in the numbers of ACNPs who are needed to provide health care to high acuity patients. Despite the prevalence of ACNPs, there has been limited exploration into how this cohort of advanced practice nurses are credentialed or privileged to perform invasive procedures.

To gain insight on how credentialing and privileging of ACNPs occur across hospitals statewide, the authors contacted all of the hospitals in California. Medical credentialing coordinators were interviewed by telephone and asked 7 questions that included hospital and ACNP demographic characteristics, a description of the credentialing and privileging processes, as well as details on the invasive procedures performed by ACNPs.

In total, the authors were able to gather data from 74% (n = 246) of all...

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