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State Nurse Practice Acts



December 2020 Summary
The following report is the AHNA 2020 Summary of U.S. Nurse Practice Acts (NPA) in all 50 states and six jurisdictions that license RNs, as they relate to Holistic Nursing.

In 2011-2012, the AHNA Practice Committee initiated a project to provide a specific state-by-state analysis of Nurse Practice Acts that referenced or addressed holistic nursing, holism and/or complementary alternative modalities (CAM) or integrative therapies within the practice of registered nurses (RNs). The initial analysis was prepared by Rebecca Cohen, EdD, RN, MS, MPA, HNB-BC with assistance from intern Sophia Bergum. In the summers of 2013, 2014, and 2015, Sarah Schneider, originally an intern from Rogers State University in Oklahoma, contacted every Board of Nursing (BON) to verify and obtain updated information about NPA language changes pertaining to holistic nursing, holism, and CAM, as well as position statement adoption by the BON that addressed any aspect of these. In 2020, Megan A. Smith, AHNA staff, contacted every BON.

Four states have direct references in their respective Nurse Practice Acts that mention holism/holistic as defined or recognize holistic nursing as a specialty (IL, NV, OR, TX). Eighteen states incorporated references and/or position statements separate from their Nurse Practice Acts on holism/holistic treatments or CAM (also referred to as Complementary Integrative Health Approaches). Not all BONs are authorized to adopt position statements.


This image shows the relationship of how many states have practice acts that specifically mention holistic practices in their "state practice acts".

This nurse practice act project is sponsored by nurses service organization, a partner in supporting registered nurses in their holistic nursing practice.