The Department of Veterans Affairs today issued a final rule allowing certain advanced practice registered nurses – certified nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists and certified nurse midwives – to practice to the full extent of their education and training within the agency. Among other provisions, the rule defines the scope of full practice authority for the three APRN roles, which are consistent with the nursing profession’s standards of practice. The rule excludes certified registered nurse anesthetists, but requests comment on whether access issues or other unconsidered circumstances might warrant their inclusion in a future rulemaking. In comments submitted in July, the AHA expressed its full support for allowing all APRNs to practice to the full extent of their education and training. “The VA’s decision is instrumental in ensuring our nation’s veterans are able to access timely, quality health care,” said Maureen Swick, AHA chief nursing officer and CEO of the AHA’s American Organization of Nurse Executives subsidiary. “AONE welcomes the VA’s recognition of nurse practitioners, certified nurse-midwives and clinical nurse specialists as full practice providers and will continue to encourage the VA to expand this rule to include certified registered nurse anesthetists.”