Advanced Practice Nursing: Reflections on the Past, Issues for the Future
Purpose/Objectives: To provide a comprehensive historical review of advanced practice nursing, describe the development of the professional role of oncology advanced practice nurses (APNs), and document the current status of major issues.
Data Sources: Published articles, research findings, position papers and statements, conference proceedings, books, newsletters, newspaper articles, executive summaries, standards and guidelines, and personal communications.
Data Synthesis: The oncology APN role has evolved over the past 100 years in response to the healthcare needs of society and available educational opportunities. Trends in health care and education continue to influence the expansion of the professional APN role.
Conclusions: Oncology APNs are prepared to practice in a variety of roles, providing expert clinical, educational, emotional, and supportive care to patients with cancer. Several major professional issues have been identified and addressed. Oncology APNs must document the influence of expert nursing care on patient outcomes and organizational efficiency.