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Essay on Nursing Certification and Licensure in South Carolina

Week 1 Main Discussion Post

NRNP – 6565 –Synthesis in Advanced Nursing Practice of Patients in Primary Care Settings

Summary of findings

State legislatures regulate nurse practitioner (NP) definition, scope of practice, and prescriptive power, as well as any criteria for physician involvement (Buppert, 2021). The state Board of Nursing (BON) in South Carolina has jurisdiction over NP practice. Holding a valid RN license, receiving a graduate-level degree in an NP function, and passing a national certification test are all requirements for being certified and licensed in South Carolina (American Association of Nurse Practitioners [AANP], 2020). The state board of nursing manages the application process via the state’s labor, licensing, and regulatory (LLR) website, which may be accessed at

The Nurse Practice Act defines the scope of practice for a nurse practitioner as “(5) “Advanced Practice Registered Nurse” or”APRN” means a registered nurse who is prepared for an advanced practice registered nursing role by virtue of additional knowledge and skills gained through an advanced formal education program of nursing in a specialty area that is approved by the board.”

Nurse practitioner, certified nurse-midwife, clinical nurse specialist, and certified registered nurse anesthetist are the types of APRNs. A Ph.D., a post-nursing master’s certificate, or a master’s degree with further education that includes didactic and supervised clinical practice in a specialized field of advanced practice registered nursing is required for an advanced practice registered nurse position.

Within two years after graduation, APRNs must achieve national certification. An APRN may engage in nonmedical activities that are considered to be part of the practice of registered nursing or advanced practice, such as population health management, quality improvement or research projects within a health care system, data analysis, and system recommendations, revisions, developments, or informatics.

Essay on Nursing Certification and Licensure in South Carolina.

A practice agreement, as established in item 1, allows an APRN to undertake certain medical actions (45). (40) “Nurse Practitioner” or “NP” refers to a registered nurse who has completed an advanced formal education program at the masters or doctoral level that the board approves, and who demonstrates advanced knowledge and skill in the assessment and management of physical and psychosocial health, illness status, and health status of individuals, families, and groups. Nurse practitioners who conduct medical acts are required to do so within the terms of a practice agreement, as stated in item (45).”

The state of South Carolina has a comprehensive Nurse Practice Act that covers a wide range of topics, including definitions, criminal records, licensing requirements and renewal, first certification test, continuous competence demonstration, and code of ethics (South Carolina Legislature, n.d.). The state’s practice agreement is a formal agreement made by a NP and a collaborating physician to outline the medical components of treatment to be delivered by the NP, as well as a method for assessment in conformity with state and federal legislation to assure patient safety and quality of care (Buppert, 2021).

Healthcare practitioners that prescribe restricted medications must have a DEA license. If an NP has a practice location, state law allows, and the NP has no felony convictions, the DEA will grant the NP a DEA number as a mid-level practitioner (Buppert, 2021). South Carolina mandates physician participation and imposes limits on controlled drug prescriptions. Schedule II nonnarcotic drugs may be prescribed for up to 30 days, but schedule II narcotic substances can only be prescribed for up to 5 days, with the exception of hospice or palliative care cases, which can be prescribed for up to 30 days (South Carolina Legislature, n.d.).

A senate bill that passed in May 2021 permits APRNs and Pas to issue orders for home health care was one of the most recent legislative and lobbying initiatives (AANP, 2020). Grand Strand Advanced Practice Nurse Association, a nurse practitioner advocacy and continuing education organization in Myrtle Beach, SC, meets monthly and provides membership to APRNs in the region as well as NP students nearing graduation.

Essay on Nursing Certification and Licensure in South Carolina.


Physician delegation, supervision, and cooperation are required for NP practice in South Carolina, which is a limited practice state. When a supervising physician has more than three NPs working under their license, the state board of medical examiners must consider the situation (AANP, 2020). In South Carolina, a particular obstacle is the lack of access to medical care and health professionals in rural regions, as well as a shortage of primary care doctors throughout the state.

SC’s adoption of the complete scope of practice has been linked to greater access to care, particularly in rural regions (Kandrack et al., 2019). Access to health care, particularly for racial and ethnic minorities, may be greatly enhanced if the expanding quantity of NP practitioners in the profession is appropriately used (Poghosyan & Carthon, 2017). More study is required on the contentious policy issue over granting full state-level NP scope of practice to all states, as well as more work on aligning practice and policy initiatives with healthcare accessibility (Patel et al., 2018).

Essay on Nursing Certification and Licensure in South Carolina.

Surprising Research Findings

The lack of uniformity in APRN scope of practice from state to state, as well as the absence of a distinct scope of practice in certain jurisdictions, is disconcerting and shocking. For an NP to practice safely and confidently, they must have clarity. With the aging population in the United States, increasing healthcare expenditures, and a growing disease load, NPs provide high-quality treatment and have a significant potential to dramatically enhance access to care and assist solve future healthcare concerns.


  • American Association of Nurse Practitioners. (2020, October 15). AANP state fact sheet: South Carolina. Retrieved August 31, 2021, from
  • Buppert, C. (2021). Nurse practitioner’s business practice and legal guide (7th ed.). Jones & Bartlett.
  • Kandrack, R., Barnes, H., & Martsolf, G. R. (2019). Nurse practitioner scope of practice regulations and nurse practitioner supply. Medical Care Research and Review78(3), 208 217.
  • Patel, E. Y., Petermann, V., & Mark, B. A. (2018). Does state-level nurse practitioner scope-of-practice policy affect access to care? Western Journal of Nursing Research41(4), 488–518.
  • Poghosyan, L., & Carthon, J. (2017). The untapped potential of the nurse practitioner workforce in reducing health disparities. Policy, Politics, & Nursing Practice18(2), 84–94.
  • South Carolina Legislature. (n.d.). South Carolina code of laws: Nurse practice act. Retrieved August 31, 2021, from
Essay on Nursing Certification and Licensure in South Carolina.

Parting Shot

Essay on Nursing Certification and Licensure in South Carolina

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What is the difference between a nurse and a certified nurse?

The scope of employment differs between an RN and a CNA. As opposed to CNAs, who work as assistants to RNs and other medical practitioners, RNs have greater autonomy in their duties. CNAs have a smaller area of work and are supervised, but they relieve the burden of others, allowing for better patient care overall.

2. What is the easiest nursing certification to get?

Nursing Certification and Licensure in South Carolina

Essay on Nursing Certification and Licensure in South Carolina

LPN or LVN programs are the shortest and most convenient of all the nursing credentials. LPN/LVN programs are appropriate for students who work or have other commitments since training may be done at a hospital, vocational-technical school, community college, or even online.

Essay on Nursing Certification and Licensure in South Carolina.

3. Which nursing certification is hardest?

Emergency nursing is regarded as one of the most demanding nursing specialties, and accreditation in this profession is highly sought.

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Essay on Nursing Certification and Licensure in South Carolina