Purpose: To provide an overview of the development and implementation of a peer review process for advanced practice nurses (APNs) based on critical incidents that provide meaningful evaluation of practice and meets the needs of APNs across multiple care specialties and practice situations.
Data sources: A review of the literature and evaluation of the existing peer review process currently in place at a large tertiary care facility.
Conclusions: Peer review is central to self-regulation and professional practice for APNs. It has been proposed that APNs of similar rank and clinical expertise should participate in peer review. APN peer review and evaluation have traditionally existed as a component of performance evaluation, evaluation of practice patterns, and compliance monitoring, and to evaluate quality indicators. We found no examples of peer review in the context of evaluating a critical incident in the literature. The APN Peer Review Committee and the review process were developed at our institution to provide peer input and communication to all credentialed APNs in incidents regarding appropriateness of care and scope of practice.
Implications for practice: APNs must assure that they have a voice in the peer review process. Representation by peers of similar specialty and rank is an important component in the peer evaluation process. The establishment of the APN Peer Review Committee served this purpose for our institution.