Vermont’s Advanced Practice Registered Nurses are licensed as APRNs. The Vermont Board recognizes the following advanced roles:
Advanced practice nurses also have population foci, which may be broad or narrow. Vermont recognizes the following population foci:
An APRN must be licensed as an RN in Vermont; Vermont is not a member of the nurse license compact.
There are three components to earning the advanced credential: completing a graduate program, achieving national certification, and fulfilling a collaborative practice requirement. After meeting all requirements, a Vermont APRN can practice independently (https://www.ncsbn.org/2014.07_18_Julymapwithpoints.pdf).
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The prospective APRN will need to earn a graduate degree or graduate certificate in one of the four roles recognized in Vermont. The program may be explicitly approved by the Board or may be approved or accredited by a state or national agency that is in turn approved by the Vermont Board. The licensing agency has provided a list of approved in-state programs (https://www.sec.state.vt.us/professional-regulation/list-of-professions/nursing/education-information.aspx).
The program must include the following coursework: advanced assessment, advanced pathophysiology, pharmacotherapeutics.
After meeting educational prerequisites, the nurse will pursue a national certification appropriate to his or her role and population focus. The following certification organizations have been approved by the Vermont Board:
Nurse practitioners may hold various certifications including family, pediatric, and psychiatric/ mental health. The AACN, AANP, ANCC, and NCC all offer nurse practitioner certifications.
Clinical nurse specialists in mental health and psychiatric practice may achieve certification through the ANCC.
The advanced nurse will initially work under formal collaborative agreement with a doctor or advanced practice nurse. This time is known as transition to practice. The transition to practice period will comprise at least two years. The nurse will need to accrue at least 2,400 hours of experience.
A nurse who subsequently earns certification in another role and population focus will complete another transition to practice, but a shorter one. The second will entail accruing at least 1,600 hours over a period of at least 12 months.
A collaborating APRN must have the same role and population focus.
An applicant who graduated two or more years in the past is expected to demonstrate recent practice. The licensing agency can accept 400 hours (50 days) earned within the most recent two-year period or 960 hours (120) earned within the most recent five-year period. Volunteer work is creditable. An APRN who seeks endorsement but does not meet these requirements will need to complete a refresher course. The Board may issue a temporary permit for this purpose. The licensing agency can accept refresher courses completed within the prior two-year time period.
The number of theoretical and clinical hours will vary, depending on the amount of time that the APRN has been out of practice. The document “Refresher Course Options” outlines requirements for those who have been out of practice 1) two to five years and 2) five to ten years (https://www.sec.state.vt.us/professional-regulation/list-of-professions/nursing/advanced-practice-registered-nurses.aspx). An individual who has been out of practice for a full ten years will need to complete a new graduate program.
Application forms can be downloaded from the website of the Vermont Secretary of State (https://www.sec.state.vt.us/professional-regulation/list-of-professions/nursing/advanced-practice-registered-nurses.aspx).
The applicant will need to provide official transcripts; these may be included in sealed envelopes or submitted by the school.
The licensing agency will also need a copy of the qualifying certification.
The advanced nurse will need to submit practice guidelines prior to commencing employment. One of the purposes is to demonstrate that the nurse is practicing only in the role and population focus that matches his or her certification. There is a format that must be followed; the licensing agency has provided a template (https://www.sec.state.vt.us/professional-regulation/list-of-professions/nursing/advanced-practice-registered-nurses.aspx).
An applicant who has a condition or addiction that could impair practice will need to provide written explanation. An applicant who has a disciplinary or legal history will need to provide written explanation and other supporting documentation.
The applicant is to attach a recent two by two photograph to the application form. The licensing agency will also require a copy of a driver’s license or other ID.
An out-of-state licensee is to include a copy of his or her license; it is to show the expiration date.
An APRN who uses volunteer work to meet the experience requirement will submit an employer letter and job description. An APRN who was in private duty may provide a letter from an employer, client, or attending provider. In all cases, contact information will be required.
There is a $75 nonrefundable application fee.
Application forms are mailed to the Board of Nursing in Montpelier.
Renewal is biennial. The APRN will demonstrate current certification and (if employed) current practice guidelines.
The licensee will also need to meet requirements for active practice. Otherwise, a refresher course will be required.
APRN information is available from the Office of Professional Regulation (https://www.sec.state.vt.us/professional-regulation/list-of-professions/nursing/advanced-practice-registered-nurses.aspx). The licensing board specialist can be reached at 802-828-2396. An APRN representative can be reached at 802-828-5924. Additional contact information is available online (https://www.sec.state.vt.us/professional-regulation/list-of-professions/nursing/contact-us.aspx).
Rules and legislation change periodically (https://www.sec.state.vt.us/professional-regulation/list-of-professions/nursing/statutes-rules.aspx). In 2015, there were some changes in language; APRNs are now ‘licensed and authorized’ instead of ‘endorsed’.
Advanced practice professional associations are additional sources of information; state chapters include the Vermont Nurse Practitioners Association (https://vtnpa.enpnetwork.com/) and the Vermont Nurse Anesthetist Association (http://www.vtana.org).
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