IMPORTANT NOTICE: Effective October 14, 2015, initial application fees for most advanced practice certifications will increase. Click here for additional information and new fee schedule.
Advanced Practice Certification
The Board of Registered Nursing (BRN) certifies public health nurses and advanced practice nurses. Advanced practice nurses include nurse practitioners, nurse-midwives, clinical nurse specialists, and nurse anesthetists. The BRN also maintains a listing of psychiatric/mental health nurses. In each of these categories, the individual must first have a California registered nurse license before obtaining the certificate.
- Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS)
- Nurse Anesthetist (NA)
- Nurse-Midwife (NMW)
- Nurse-Midwife Furnishing Number (NMF)
- Nurse Practitioner (NP)
- Nurse Practitioner Furnishing Number (NPF)
- Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse (PMH)
- Public Health Nurse (PHN)
The clinical nurse specialist is a BRN certified RN who is an advanced practice nurse providing expert clinical practice, research, education, consultation and clinical leadership with an identified patient population. The scope of clinical nurse specialist practice includes patients, nursing personnel and organization systems. Clinical nurse specialists work in direct patient care and indirect patient care activities that affect a broad range of patients.
There are three (3) methods to qualify for certification as a clinical nurse specialist with the BRN. General reporting of prior conviction or disciplines are required for all methods.
The nurse anesthetist is a registered nurse who provides anesthesia services ordered by a physician, dentist, or podiatrist, and is certified by the BRN in this specialty.
The nurse-midwife is a registered nurse who, having received a certificate from the BRN, under the supervision of a licensed physician and surgeon, attends cases of normal childbirth and provides prenatal, intrapartum, and postpartum care, including family planning care for mothers and immediate care for the newborn.
There are three methods to qualify for certification as a nurse-midwife with the BRN. General reporting of prior conviction/disciplines are required for all methods.
A furnishing number is issued by the BRN to a nurse-midwife which allows him or her to "order" or furnish drugs and devices to patients using approved standardized procedures. The nurse-midwife with a furnishing number may obtain a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration number if he or she wants to order controlled substances as needed for patient care.
The nurse practitioner is a registered nurse who possesses additional preparation and skills in physical diagnosis, psychosocial assessment, and management of health and illness needs in primary health care.
There are three methods to qualify for certification as a nurse practitioner with the BRN. General reporting of prior convictions or disciplines are required for all methods.
The BRN issues a furnishing number to a nurse practitioner that allows him or her to "order" or furnish drugs and devices to patients using approved standardized procedures. A nurse practitioner with a furnishing number may obtain a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration number if they want to order controlled substances as needed for patient care.
Pursuant to Insurance Code Section 10176, the BRN maintains a listing of registered nurses who possess a master's degree in psychiatric/mental health nursing plus two years of supervised experience providing services as a psychiatric/mental health nurse and who have applied to the BRN to be listed. This voluntary listing enables the certificate holder to receive direct reimbursement from insurance carriers for counseling services.
There are two methods to qualify for listing as a psychiatric/mental health nurse with the BRN. General reporting of prior conviction/disciplines are required for both methods.
The public health nurse is a registered nurse who has received a certificate from the BRN. He or she is an integral part of the public health community and provides direct patient care as well as services related to maintaining public health.