Florida Nurse Practitioner Network
Empowering Florida Nurse Practitioners as Leaders in Healthcare (Est 2002)

FNPN Fall Newsletter

Posted 23 days ago by ENP Admin

Good Day!

We would like to bring you up to date on what’s new in your own backyard of Florida.

In this newsletter you will find the following:

  • Contents
  • Presidents Message
  • Legislative Update
  • FNPN Membership Update
  • Around the State
  • Job Announcement
  • News You Can Use
  • Register for “Safe and Effective Prescribing of Controlled Substances" course

Quote of the Month

“Our lives improve only when we take chances - and the first and most difficult risk we can take is, to be honest with ourselves.”
― Walter Anderson

President's Message

Dr. Arlene Wright, President

Happy Fall! The BOD of FNPN has been hard at work over the past few months preparing for several new initiatives specifically our members-only section. We also have plans for one day sessions at different parts of the state for new NP grads…stay tuned!

We want to thank our conference attendees for making our 2019 conference, one of the best! The conference committee is already preparing the 2020 agenda that will have some new and different offerings! We appreciate our member's feedback and encourage input as we continue to strive to develop quality programs.

Huge thank you to all attendees that donated to the “back to school“ drive that delivered an enormous amount of much-needed school supplies to the Salvation Army Women & Children’s Center of Orlando. Due to the overwhelming success, FNPN has adopted this as our annual drive.

We want to thank our think tank leaders for their participation and engagement and look forward to continued collaboration.

The 2019 conference also hosted our first specialty group of directors of advanced providers from around the state which will serve as a network to promote this relatively new administrative role for NPs.

Another new role for FNPN has been the Development of the regional directors. If you did not get a chance to meet them during the conference, you can be assured that they will be coming to a local meeting near you in the future!

If any local groups have NP week celebrations planned, please let us know so that we can showcase our colleagues. We are also always seeking to spotlight NP’s in the state making a difference. If you know a deserving colleague, let us know!

We know that Florida has one of the largest numbers of NPs! We are asking that each of you reach out to a colleague and encourage them to become a member and get involved!

Together we are stronger!

FNPN Legislative Update

Doreen Cassarino, DNP, APRN, FNP-BC, BC-ADM, FAANP, FNAP

The legislative session ended on May 4th having 3571 member and committee bills filed. There were 2,997 amendments filed to those bills and a total of 196 bills actually passed both chambers and headed to the Governor for signature.

HB 821 Health Care Practitioners (Pigman)/SB 972 Innovation in the APRN Workforce (Brandes) DID NOT PASS

  • The House bill passed favorably but unfortunately, the Senate bill did not get a hearing in the first committee of reference, Health Policy.
  • These bills would achieve full practice authority for Florida APRNs and Physician’s Assistants. Under the bills, an APRN or PA who holds an active unencumbered license and has completed 2,000 clinical practice or clinical instructional hours as an APRN or PA may register to practice independently.
  • FNPN Board of Directors and our lobbyist, Allison Carvajal, continue to partner with the FL Coalition of Advanced Practice Nurses towards ensuring the full and direct access to NP provided services.

HB 831 Electronic Prescribing (Mariano)-PASSED Effective Date 1/1/2020

  • The law requires prescribers to generate and transmit all prescriptions electronically by 2021 unless electronic prescribing in unavailable due to a temporary electrical or technological failure. In such instances, written prescriptions may be used.

HB 451 Nonopioid Alternatives (Plakon)-PASSED Effective Date 7/1/2019

  • HB 451 requires the Department of Health to create and publish on its website an educational pamphlet regarding the use of non-opioid alternatives to treat pain. Health care providers, except in the provision of emergency care, must inform patients of non-opioid alternatives for the treatment of pain before providing anesthesia or prescribing, ordering, dispensing or administering an opioid drug and document the non-opioid alternatives considered in the patient’s record. For more information Click Here

CS/CS/HB 23 Telehealth (Yarborough) PASSED Effective Date 7/1/19

  • Creates section 456.47, Florida Statutes, establishing standards of practice for telehealth providers, registration of out-of-state providers, venue requirements and exemptions. 

Thank you to all who visited, emailed and/or called your legislators and supported the FNPN PAC. Your efforts have made it possible to pass bills which will ultimately improve access to NP services in our great state of Florida!


Laureen M. Fleck, Ph.D., FNP-BC, CDE, FAANP

WOW, We had a successful PAC event held during our Annual Meeting in Orlando. Senator Denise Grimsley came and spoke with the attendees regarding legislative policy and practice. Allison Carvajal, our lobbyist joined in the presentation and explained the need to be involved at the grassroots level. Desserts and networking gave us time to relax and bring our questions to the group for clarification.

The weekend was a great way to raise funds for PAC. We offered beautiful baskets, pashminas, T-shirts and coffee tumblers for donations. Approximately $4,000 was raised. Please show your interest in the PAC by making a $25 donation (through the website). It helps to get our lobbyist funds for the campaigns we want to support and the exposure of our NP issues.
The Political Action Committee (PAC) is only as strong as all of us!.

FNPN Membership

Dr. Cindy Parsons, FNPN Membership Chair

Welcome to Fall and welcome to all of our members. 2019 saw growth in our membership and we would like to acknowledge and thank all of you. We depend on you our members to make FNPN dynamic. Through you, FNPN has been able to accomplish significant legislation over the year for APRNs, but without you our loyal supporters we would not be able to make such great gains. Your support continues to solidify FNPN as the representative organization and voice for NPs in Florida. We would love to see all Florida licensed NPs and local groups be active members in FNPN. There are over 16,000 NPs in the state and what a force we could be if we work together on our collective goals.

While we have made gains over the last five years in our ability to provide the best care possible for Floridians, we still have much to do. With your continued support, we can. If you haven’t renewed or know a colleague who is not a member, please reach out and encourage them to do so. We would like to engage the local leadership of the grassroots NP groups and ask that you encourage your leaders to join or renew their group membership. FNPN now is split into five regions with a regional director for each area (please see the map and links on the website). We have a busy 2020 ahead and need all of us working toward these goals. If you are unsure if your group is a member you can check our website as the groups are broken out by regions and delineated as to members or not.

We worked with the Florida Coalition of APNs to develop an Advocacy month with webinars and CEs. This was a great example of the power of unity and we want to thank each of you for your efforts. Our legislators need to hear from each and every one of you in a loud and clear voice that NPs provide high quality, safe and effective care and that our patients are satisfied with their care to want to continue to work with their NP providers.

Just a quick reminder of the CE requirement for Controlled Substance education (3 CEs) FNPN in partnership with the Florida Hospital Association have a course the meets these requirements and is approved for AANP CE (including pharm credit. As a benefit of membership, we offer it to members for a $5.00 fee.

Again, thank you for your membership and continued support of your FNPN.

Around the State

Be sure to click here for the FNPN calendar of upcoming events

FNPN attended the Florida Coalition of Advanced Practice meeting held in conjunction with FANA’s annual conference.

FNPN is Shouting Out “FORE!”


Dr. Loretta Ford’s 2nd Annual Golf Tournament hosted by FNPN.

Mark your calendars for January 4, 2020, and join us for the 2nd Golf Scramble and Birthday Celebration for Dr. Loretta Ford at the Continental Country Club in Wildwood, Florida.

  • Tee-off is at 8:00 AM with the traditional “NP FORCE” Mimosa’s at Hole 1.
  • Gather your Foursome or sign up on the website to play a 9 hole scramble that will be posted on October 1, 2019. Space is very limited for this event.
  • A luncheon complete with a birthday cake and gift for Dr. Ford will follow at the Continental clubhouse at 12:00 PM to 3:00 PM. You can sign up for both events or individually!
  • An awards presentation will be held at the luncheon for the winning Golfers.
  • Come join the challenge of the NP Force History Trivia Game during the Luncheon


Region 1:

Kathleen Wilson, PhD, APRN, CPNP, FNP-BC, BC-ADM, FAANP

GREETINGS from Region 1

Since our last update we reported on the heroic efforts of several APRNs along the North Florida Gulf Coast from the extreme devastation of Hurricane Michael on October 10, 2019. Region 1 has had a busy Spring and Summer:


NEW Local APRN Council:

  1. WELCOME our newest local council: North West Florida (NWFL) Nurse Practitioner Network in Escambia County, known as the Very Important Providers (VIP’s) in Pensacola, Florida, Approximately 35 local APRN’s have joined together to start a local council under the leadership of President Dr Jacqueline Thomas, DNP, and Vice President Monica Sanford! A most recent meeting held on 9/19/19 with a presentation by Medical Science Liaison from Sanofi Alethea Hill, Ph.D., ACNP, ANP-BC for an excellent interactive presentation on Optimizing Insulin Therapy: Basal Insulin and Beyond. We all learned a lot!

Awards & Recognitions:

  1. FNPN NP of Excellence, 2019: Congratulations to our very own nominees. - Dr. Jacquel-ine Thomas and Monica Sanford from the North West Florida (NWFL) Nurse Practitioner Network in Escambia County, known as the Very Important Providers (VIP’s – a term coined by this dynamic duo!). Their collective effort together working to restart the North West Florida local NP council and for their ongoing advocacy for NP practice. They not only re-started and rejuvenated their local NP group, but also engaged key political figures along the way by summoning their attention to the positive impact of NP care their area. CONGRATULATIONS to you BOTH! We are proud of you!

  2. First FNPN President’s Humanitarian Award: The FNPN President’s Humanitarian Award was created to recognize outstanding individuals who have dedicated their time to building bridges and contributing to community outreach while raising awareness of the Nurse Practitioner profession in the aid to Floridians. This new award recognizes professional and personal accomplishments consistent with our mission and goals of serving all Floridians.

2019 Awardees:

  • Christine Bottkol, DNP, APRN, FNP-C
  • Sarah Beth Guy, DNP, APRN, FNP-C
  • Janet Gysi, APRN, FNP-C
  • Sharon Wolford, APRN, FNP -C

These Nurse Practitioners were honored for their courage, sacrifice, and unwavering strength and commitment to restoring health in their Panama City community in the aftermath of Hurricane Michael in October 2018. In her nomination letter, Dr. Kathleen Wilson, FNPN Region 1 Director, noted that their inspiring and selfless efforts, despite personal loss and impact from the Hurricane, by stepping up to provide much-needed continuity of care for those who lost so much is to be commended. They continue to help rebuild their community providing healthcare and support to many who were traumatized by this disaster.

In Summary, looking forward to a GREAT year ahead for our Region 1. Please be mindful that NOW is the time to put your ADVOCACY skills to good use by reaching out and talking to your local state representatives about matters that affect NP practice.

Region 2


The most recent Florida Nurse Practitioner Network Annual Meeting was the site for the first meeting of advanced practice provider (APP) managers. This emerging group of leaders is tasked with oversight, recruitment, role development, and advocacy of APPs functioning in a variety of roles within their institutions. Orlando Health’s Jennifer Quilty DNP, APRN is one of these pioneers. Jennifer earned her master of science in nursing from the University of Central Florida in 2005 and her doctor of nursing practice from the University of Florida in 2010. She began with the organization as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner with the general surgery and trauma team and continues to maintain her clinical practice part-time. She was first promoted to APP manager in 2016 at Orlando Health Arnold Palmer Medical Center, she then accepted the larger role of Director of APPs for the Orlando Health Medical Group in 2018. Most recently, Jennifer was promoted to Chief Clinical Officer, answering directly to the President of the Orlando Health Medical Group. As CCO, she oversees 4 managers, responsible for 270 APPs.

Although each institution is developing these roles to meet their own unique needs, Dr. Quilty shared several common overarching goals for the APP Manager:

  • Support and enhance the practice of APPs
  • Develop specialty-specific new hire APP orientation with APP, physician, and practice management input. 
  • Recruitment, coordinating interview process and credentialing for new hire APPs
  • Coordinate program development with Medical Staff
  • Assist with APP goal development, planning, execution and evaluation of goal achievement 
  • Ensures APP-based quality/performance improvement initiatives are carried out and appropriate action plans are developed to correct deficiencies
  • Meets regularly with APPs, physicians, and leadership of OHMG to foster ongoing relations and determine the adequacy of APP staffing and quality of care delivery

As the call for skilled providers continues to rise, the need to have someone in administration specifically focused on supporting and advocating for APP practice takes on increasing importance. Dr. Quilty is one of a growing number of leaders taking on the responsibility of bridging bridges between APPs and medical management to best promote professional practice while maintaining the highest standards for patient care.

Dr. Doreen Cassarino Attends Medicare EO Signing at the Villages in Florida


Dr. Doreen Cassarino, AANP Region 11 Director, traveled to the Villages retirement community in Central Florida yesterday, October 3, 2019, to attend an invitational only gathering for President Trump's signing of an Executive Order (EO) focusing on modernizing Medicare. The event was held strategically at the Sharon L. Morse Performing Arts Center before a mostly retiree packed audience concerned about the future of their Medicare coverage. The title of this executive order is “Protecting and Improving Medicare for Our Nation’s Seniors.” Doreen reports the President specially mentioned Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ prescription drug importation law with Canada as a good innovative way to reduce prescription cost and noted within the EO it contains provisions to allow “other types of clinicians”, such as nurse practitioners and physician assistants, to practice at the top of their licenses, and hopefully eliminating supervision requirements for physician oversight. For years organized medicine has strongly opposed this necessary change. NPs see this move will help especially with rural practices that suffer the most now and will increase the NPs ability to work to the full extent of their education and preparation. Doreen is Past President of FNPN and current Vice President of Legislative Affairs. Doreen is also a past president, board officer and member of Collier County NP Council, Naples.

Read entire Executive Order HERE

Current groups:
Resources that are available to you from FNPN:

  1. Are you in need of meeting ideas or sponsors? 
  2. Growing your group's board or recruiting people to fill your board positions. 
  3. Ideas for community outreach to enhance APRN’s viability 
  4. Creating a speaker panel available for media outlets to contact for expert's opinions. 
  5. Group promotional merchandise resources
  6. Political involvement in how FNPN can help your group get involved.
  7. Leadership resources.

Job Announcements!

There have been many new job postings around the state on our web site at www.fnpn.org for those of you that may have an interest. On our new website, the most recent postings are on the front page. A new feature will allow postings to be visible for 90 days. Please feel free to pass this along to your colleagues who may be interested in it as well, or who may have an interest in finding out more about our network. For those of you that have found jobs on our website, please be sure to let us know!

Do you know an employer who might find the FNPN Job posting a worthwhile site? If so, please be sure to tell them about the website and the fact that on average 20 or more jobs are posted each month. The traffic to our website is incredible and we have more and more folks seeking employment through this site than ever before. Let them know you saw it on the FNPN Website!

News You Can Use

The Florida NP Network has taken the next step to keep our members informed. Keep abreast of changes in your practice around the state and around the nation. You can join us today on Facebook under Florida Nurse Practitioner and Twitter under FloridaNP. We hope to hear from you.

CE Broker

Did you know that full members can get a discount to CE Broker? Click here to find out more

Register here for the "Safe and Effective Prescribing of Controlled Substances" course

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