VANCOUVER – Washington State Nurses Association Professional Nursing and Health Care Council has named Louise Kaplan, assistant professor of nursing at Washington State University Vancouver, recipient of the 2007 Nurse Researcher Award.

Kaplan, with her research partner Marie-Annette Brown from University of Washington, has been researching the prescribing of controlled substances by advanced registered nurse practitioners in Washington State since 2001.

That research was instrumental in a state legislative change in 2005 which gave complete prescriptive authority to advanced registered nurse practitioners for all medications and controlled substances.

“For me it’s a validation of the efforts of many years,” said Kaplan, president of the association from 1999 to 2001. “This is an important example of how research can change nursing practice and policy. “

Kaplan is also involved in studying the influence of Washington’s eight nurse legislators on the development of health policy.