In their seminal publication Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) called for the redesign of health care delivery (2001). The IOM asserted that to ensure the patient safety, the education of healthcare professionals must be modernized. Interestingly, it wasn’t additional clinical hours that the IOM recommended, but instead the ability to translate knowledge into practice, apply new technology safety and appropriately, and work as a part of interdisciplinary teams (Institute of Medicine, 2003).
In response to the IOM’s call to action, the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) developed a new practice doctorate for advanced practice nurses, the doctor of nursing practice (DNP) degree (Dreher & Glasgow, 2010). The AACN created this degree to align directly with the IOM recommendations. To further demonstrate nursing’s dedication to improving patient outcomes, the AACN identified the DNP degree as the terminal degree for all areas of advanced nursing practice (AACN, 2004).
DNP Programs Across the Country 1
As of June 2015, there are 264 DNP programs across the United States with more in the planning stages.
Download the Growing DNP Infographic