Quote from forpath
Aren't there already APN degrees for specialties? Neonatology, psychiatry? I may be wrong.
Somebody can correct me if I am wrong but I thought Neonatal NP's practice in a very similar manner as critical care NP's - under collaboration with a physician specifically a neonatologist. Psyhciatric and Mental Health NP's, I guess, can practice independently depending on the state practice act.
Nursing continues to be at the top in terms of public perception of being the most ethical and honest profession. I think it is important that we safeguard this image by protecting the public and making sure that whatever endavor we get into, we have the safety of our patients in mind. It is quite unsafe in my opinion to enter into independent practice for NP's in specializations where there is no established standards as far as training and certification. Currently, FNP, ANP, ACNP, WHNP, NNP, PNP, PNP-AC, PMHNP (I may have omitted one or two, so pardon me) are the only NP certifications with established standards for training and certification.
Even though specialization is not uncommon in nursing and there is an abundance of RN-specific specialty certifications for nurses (CCRN, CEN, CRRN, OCN, etc.), there isn't much in the way of actual subspecialty certification for NP's in fields such as cardiology, endocrinology, and such. There may be NP programs specifically directed to these subspecialty fields but there is no established uniformity in the curricula between programs.
I also know of advanced practice certification in oncology (AOCN) and diabetes management (BC-ADM) but these are not specifically offered to NP's alone. Until we come up with established standards for subspecialty practice, I think NP's should continue to practice the way we are doing at the current time.