A Note from Your VCNP President
According to the Virginia Department of Health, “Nationally, the Delta variant is causing a surge in COVID cases, hospitalizations and deaths. In Virginia, cases have increased by 956% since mid-June, and the state is now at a substantial level of transmission. The majority of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths in the U.S. and Virginia are occurring in people who are not fully vaccinated.” 
Updated VDH guidance
Based on the CDC’s interim public health recommendations for fully vaccinated people, the VDH recommends the following:
  • Fully vaccinated people should wear a mask in public indoor settings if they are in an area of substantial or high transmission.
  • Fully vaccinated people might choose to mask regardless of the level of transmission, particularly if they or someone in their household is immunocompromised or at increased risk for severe disease, or if someone in their household is unvaccinated.
  • Fully vaccinated people should get tested if they are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and isolate if they have tested positive for COVID-19 in the prior 10 days or are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Fully vaccinated people should also get tested 3–5 days after exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 and wear a mask in public indoor settings for 14 days after exposure or until they receive a negative test result.
  • All K-12 schools (including PreK classrooms) in Virginia should implement a requirement for students, teachers, and staff to wear masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status.
School universal mask mandate
Today Governor Northam announced a public health emergency order to require universal masking in all Virginia K-12 schools. The Governor’s office said the order reinforces state law that requires schools to adhere to mitigation strategies from the CDC. The order includes public and private schools.
VDH dashboard – cases by vaccination status
The VDH’s COVID-19 data insights now include cases by vaccination status. Since January, more than 99% of cases and 98% of hospitalizations and deaths have been among people who are not fully vaccinated. Of more than 4.6 million Virginians who are fully vaccinated, there have been 1,566 breakthrough cases, 145 hospitalizations, and 42 deaths.
Vaccines required for state employees
Last week, Governor Northam issued an executive order requiring vaccinations for state employees. Employees who do not show proof of vaccination by September 1 must get tested for COVID-19 weekly and show proof of negative test results. The Department of Human Resource Management will issue more detailed guidance by August 15.
Additional VDH updates
The Virginia Department of Health recently shared updates about:
  • Delta variant and guidance
  • Monoclonal antibody therapy and post-exposure prophylaxis
  • Guillain-Barré syndrome after receiving J&J’s COVID vaccine
  • Non-COVID-19 respiratory viruses
  • Burkholderia cepacia complex infections associated with contaminated ultrasound gel
  • Back-to-school vaccinations and updated resources
Have you taken this primary care COVID survey?
In March 2020, the Larry A. Green Center launched a national survey to better understand the response and capacity of U.S. primary care practices to COVID-19 as well as the potential impact of the pandemic on primary care. The role of primary care is gaining attention in national efforts, and the White House Vaccines Coordinator, Dr. Bechara Choucair, has found this data particularly valuable.
Please take 4-5 minutes to respond to this month’s survey by Tuesday, August 17.
Have you applied for autonomous practice?
As of August 1, 1,448 NPs in Virginia have received their autonomous practice license! You’re eligible to apply if you have at least two years of clinical experience (equivalent to 3,600 hours).

Note that you will not receive an email when your license is approved. To check the status of your application, log in to your online account about 4-6 weeks after submission. You will not receive a new license until your next license renewal.
Share your autonomous practice stories
If you’ve received your autonomous practice license, let us know why you applied, how autonomous licensure will impact your practice and why you think it’s important for other NPs to apply. Send your stories – and a photo - to [email protected] for use in future VCNP communications.
Membership renewals coming soon
VCNP members were sent information about membership renewal in early August. The renewal period ends September 30. To continue receiving membership benefits, renew now!
Want one less thing to do? Consider auto renewal! Opt-in to auto renewal on your renewal application by answering “yes” under the “Automatic Renewal” option. NOTE: If you selected the automatic renewal option last year, you will need to sign up again for auto renewal, since we upgraded our system this year.
As an organization, VCNP offers stellar speakers and CE events, a dynamic annual state conference, enhanced member communications to keep members updated on information that impacts NP practice, and partnerships with dedicated lobbyists and legal counsel to advocate for our members and all Virginia NPs. Last year, we were successful in passing HB 1737, which reduced from five to two years the time to be eligible for autonomous practice. We look forward to what the future holds for NPs and hope you will continue to partner with us through your membership.
Make your point with your PAC donation
A decimal point is small but powerful—its placement can turn hundreds into thousands. Help us make our point with Virginia’s legislators by making a donation in support of our 2022 legislation! Whether you contribute $5.00, $50.00 or $500.00, your donation to VCNP’s PAC will help us make our point!
Sign up for monthly donations, which can start at $5/month and be automatically deducted from your account. One-time donations are welcome too!
VCNP doctoral scholarship deadline – Sept. 1
Applications are being accepted for VCNP’s annual NP doctoral scholarship. If you’re enrolled in a DNP or PhD program, apply by September 1
Coming soon: nominations for VCNP state elections
Beginning September 1, VCNP members will be able to nominate candidates for state positions of president-elect, secretary and treasurer. If you or someone you know may be interested in one of these roles or would like more information about the positions, log in to your vcnp.net member account and go to Our Association-Bylaws & Policies – VCNP Policies & Procedures. Many regions also will be holding elections this fall so contact your regional leadership to learn about open positions.
COVID vaccine updates
As of August 12, more than 4.6 million Virginians had been fully vaccinated, and more than 5.2 million Virginians had received one dose. Please encourage your patients, family and friends to use Virginia’s centralized system to preregister for free COVID-19 vaccines – online at vaccinate.virginia.gov or by phone at 877-VAX-INVA (829-4682). 
With the rise in COVID cases, I know many of us are feeling the effects of the last 17 months. Please be sure to take time for yourself, check in with colleagues, and allow VCNP to support your professional needs. Thank you for your commitment to your patients and our profession, and please let me know how VCNP can be a resource for you.
Becky Compton, DNP, RN, FNP-BC
President, VCNP Board of Directors