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Teaching

What is an Advanced Practice?

An advanced practice nurse (APN) is a licensed professional registered nurse with advanced training and education. This nurse specializes in one of four areas: certified nurse midwife (CNM), certified nurse practitioner (CAPN), certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA), or clinical nurse specialist (CNS). Advanced practice nurses provide high-quality healthcare services. APNs diagnose and treat a wide range of health problems.

Advanced Practice Nurses have graduate, advanced education and clinical training beyond their registered nurse preparation. Most have master's degrees and many have doctorates. To become an APN in Illinois, the law now requires a master's degree in a specialty, specialty certification and state licensing.

APNs are involved in every area of health care and their role in the field continues to expand. APNs diagnose and treat a wide range of health problems. They have a unique approach and stress both care and cure.

APNs focus on the whole person when they are treating patients and educate their patients on the effects of the patient's specific health problems on the person, their loved ones, and their community. Besides clinical care, APNs focus on health promotion, disease prevention, health education and counseling. They help patients make wise health and lifestyle choices. By providing high-quality care and counseling, APNs can lower the cost of health care for patients.

(From Illinois Society for Advanced Practice Nursing: www.isapn.org)