Guide to Nurse Practitioner Conferences (2021) – Sponsoring Organizations & Eligibility

As the world continues to contend with the impact of Covid-19, conferences that offer healthcare professionals the capacity to grow their skills, knowledge, and practice have adapted to fit our post-pandemic reality. In 2020, many long standing NP conferences switched to virtual formats in order to deliver the CE, networking, and advocacy conversations that are the lifeblood of conferences.

In 2021, NP conferences are being planned in a wide variety of formats. Some NP conferences, especially those occurring in early 2021, are keeping the virtual format alive, offering participants the flexibility to expand their NP skills and knowledge through virtual sessions that can be experienced either live or on-demand. Other NP conferences are being organized with the hope that the restrictions of the pandemic will lift, and conferences will be able to run in-person, at large event centers, and without the online components. Many NP conference organizers have come to see the value of virtual conferences, and have chosen to create conferences that are happening in-person and virtually.

Regardless of the format, conferences can be an essential part of an NP’s year based on what they offer. Many NP conferences work to expand the recognition of the importance of the NP role to healthcare, connect NPs to one another in order to create advocacy and business partnerships, and provide NPs with the continuing education needed to maintain active board certification. Speciality NP conferences also provide NPs working with specific populations information on cutting-edge technologies and treatment modalities, as well as specialty-specific insight and networking.

The following is a list of conferences being offered in 2021 that nurse practitioners may find useful to help them with continuing education, networking, and advocacy opportunities.

General Nurse Practitioner Conferences

AANP Health Policy Conference

The AANP Health Policy Conference is for NPs and NP advocates who wish to develop the skills and understanding needed for federal-level advocacy. At this conference, experts in NP advocacy discuss how congressional and federal administration priorities can potentially impact NPs, the healthcare system, and patient care.

Previous AANP conferences provided opportunities for NPs to form coalitions with NPs from their region, and have face-to-face conversations with their elected officials. The 2020 conference proceedings included discussions on full practice authority, congressional staff panels, social media, veterans affairs, and AMS updates.

  • Date: February 25 – March 11, 2021
  • Location: Online
  • Cost: $95 (student) – $350 (non-member)
  • CE Opportunities: Six contact hours

AANP National Conference

The AANP national conference is designed for NPs of all specialities looking to improve their individual practice, participate in policy conversations, increase cultural competency, and network. With hundreds of sessions and workshops available, this large-scale conference enables NPs of all specialities to earn up to 40 contact hours of continuing education (CE) and pharmacology credit, as well.

Opportunities in the AANP national conference include educational sessions that bring industries together, the chance to join a speciality-developing practice group, NP student networking events, and an exhibition hall featuring employers, poster presentations, vendors, product showcases, and AANP-specific goods and services. The AANP conference also offers for-pay workshops and seminars that train NPs in specific skills. Examples from the 2020 conference include spirometry for primary care NPs, telehealth, and women’s sexual health.

  • Date: June 15-20, 2021
  • Location: Anaheim, California
  • Cost: $195 (student) – $805 (non-member) for the full conference
  • CE Opportunities: 40 contact hours

Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Conferences

Barkley & Associates National Conference for Nurse Practitioners in Acute Care

The National Conference for Nurse Practitioners in Acute Care (NPAC) 2021 is a celebration of exceptional NPs working in hospitals, emergency rooms, and acute care in these extraordinary times. The online conference offers three days of general sessions that participants will have access to on demand for 60 days following the conference proceedings.

NPs have a wide range of topics to engage with, including infectious diseases in acute care, acute management and prevention of COPD, how to handle acute psychiatric/mentally ill patients in crisis, managing multidrug resistant pathogens, and pharmacology implications for sepsis. Providing the opening keynote address, Cindy L. Munro PhD, ANP-BC, ANP, FAANP will be speaking on how NPs can optimize outcomes in acute care settings.

  • Date: October 15-17, 2021
  • Location: Online
  • Cost: $299 (early registration) – $529 (last minute registration)
  • CE Opportunities: 22.5 contact hours
  • Audience: Acute Care, Adult/Geriatric, Family, Emergency, CNSs

Adult/Gerontological Nurse Practitioner Conferences

GAPNA 2021 Annual Conference

The Gerontological Advanced Practice Nurses Association (GAPNA) offers a conference to aid NPs working with older adults to improve their practice. In addition to education and networking opportunities, GAPNA confers awards to AGNPs displaying excellence in clinical practice, community service, education, leadership and research. GAPNA also offers pre-conference workshops for those interested in deep skill building. In 2020, these workshops included dementia care training, pharmacology, and a certification review course.

Topics in the 2020 conference included the NP role in elder abuse, reducing non-urgent emergency department visits of homeless veterans through adherence to a nurse-practitioner-led comprehensive plan of care, animal-assisted therapy, engaging African American families in end-of-life discussions, and the feasibility of a telehealth program during hospital-to-home transition for caregivers of persons living with dementia.

  • Date: September 29 – October 2, 2021
  • Location: San Diego, CA
  • Cost (in 2020): $250 (member, standard CNE package) – $570 (non-member premium CNE package)
  • CE Opportunities: In 2020: Up to 19 CNEs

Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Conferences

NANN 37th Annual Conference

The National Association of Neonatal Nurses (NANN) offers an annual conference that provides state-of-the-art and evidence based approaches that challenge novice and expert neonatal nurses to improve their nursing practices.

For 2021, NANN is soliciting presentations and poster topics that cover a range of neonatal priorities including nutritional requirements of the newborn, adaptation to extrauterine life, endocrine and metabolic issues, fluid and electrolyte management, radiologic interpretation, cue-based feeding, breastfeeding support, and donor milk program issues.

In addition to regular conference proceedings, NANN offers an APRN summit for an extra fee. In 2020, this summit was entitled, “Racial Disparities in Birth Outcomes: Considering the Environment Outside the Hospital Walls.” The past conference offered participants four designated educational tracks for APRNs, bedside/clinical RNs, educators and leaders, and children’s hospital AP/RNs.

  • Date: September 15-18, 2021
  • Location: Denver, Colorado
  • Cost (in 2020): $120 (undergraduate) – $420 (registration + membership)
  • CE Opportunities (in 2020): 40+ hour

Nurse Midwife Conferences

GOLD Midwifery Online Conference

The GOLD online conference is designed to help Nurse Midwives expand the knowledge and skills that mediate improved outcomes for the families they serve. The conference happens over the course of one month, and provides attendees with the opportunities to learn and discuss topics with other nurse midwives in real-time, or learn at their own pace by accessing recorded proceedings on demand.

Topics offered include assessment and management of fear in childbirth, perspectives on the impact of Covid-19 on birthing families and their care providers, resolving labor dystocia through improved understanding of birth biomechanics, trauma-informed pelvic care in the time of Covid-19, and antenatal fetal surveillance made easy. In addition to the included topics, 2020 conference-goers could choose from add-on sessions that included preventing and healing trauma in the perinatal period, breastfeeding and medically complex infants, and infant sleep.

  • Date: February 1 – April 2, 2021
  • Location: Online
  • Cost: $110 (early bird group registration) – $170 (regular individual registration)
  • CE Opportunities: 13.5 contact hours

ACNM 66th Annual Meeting & Exhibition

The topic for the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) Annual Meeting & Exhibition is, “Dismantling Racism in Midwifery: Acknowledging the Past and Building a Better Future.” The meeting and exhibition is touted as the largest meeting of midwives in the United States, and offers educational, professional development, networking, and business meeting opportunities for CNMs.

The keynote speaker for the meeting is Shafia Monroe, a midwife practicing in the southern form of healing, a historian and keeper of African American birth traditions, and a woman with a legacy of working for reproductive justice and birth equity. ACNM meeting proceedings include for-pay workshops, educational sessions, plenary sessions, award ceremonies, and gatherings for future midwives, midwives of color, midwifery business, global health, students, and more.

  • Date: May 21-25, 2021
  • Location: Portland, Oregon / Online
  • Cost: $125 – $995 (in person); $265 – $795 (virtual)
  • CE Opportunities: 6.5 contact hours (full-day workshop); one CE per one-hour education session, plenary, or forum; 0.5 CE for 0.5 hour round tables.

Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Conferences

NAPNAP 42nd Annual National Conference on Pediatric Health Care

The aim of the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP) annual conference on pediatric healthcare is to strengthen pediatric and professional practice through advance strategic priorities, enhance clinical expertise, incorporate emerging evidence into diagnostics and issues management in pediatrics, create and expand professional networks, and develop leaders in the field. There are educational mini-tracks available for those interested in specializing their experience around Covid-19, telehealth, orthopedics, and substance abuse.

Virtual attendees get access to recordings of the live conference, plus sessions specifically developed for the virtual experience through July 31, 2021. In-person attendees also have access to these recordings as well. In addition to the core offerings, both virtual and in-person attendees can sign up for intensive workshops at an additional fee. Intensive topics include telehealth 101, pharmacology updates, pediatric orthopedic secrets throughout the ages, frenotomy, interpretation of pediatric radiographs, bed bugs and contagious kids, child maltreatment, and rheumatology review.

  • Date: March 10-13, 2021 (in-person); March 24-27, 2021 (virtual);
  • Location: Orlando, Florida / Online
  • Cost: In-person: $150 (one day) – $725 (full conference, non-member); Virtual: $200 (student, early registration) – $650 (non-member, regular registration)
  • CE Opportunities: 80+ contact hours

Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Conferences

National Nurse Practitioner Symposium

The National Nurse Practitioner Symposium (NNPS) provides NPs in primary and acute care opportunities to learn more about clinical practice, professional development, research, and innovations in practice settings. He Susan B. Hassmiller, RN, PhD, FAAN, the symposium’s keynote speakers, will be discussing the role of NPs in creating health equity during Covid-19.

Examples from the wide range of educational topics included in the conference include zoonosis, palliative care, self-care, technology, trauma, allergies, contraception, imagine, infectious disease, and mental health. In addition to the core conference proceedings, the symposium offers a two-day 9.5-CE Rocky Mountain Retreat focused on helping NPs to cultivate wellness in their practice, and a four-CE comprehensive headache education seminar.

  • Date: July 8-11, 2021
  • Location: Keystone, Colorado
  • Cost: $275 (one day) – $540 (full symposium)
  • CE Opportunities: 43.5 CE hours, with 9 additional offered post-symposium via online testing

29th Annual Primary Care Summer Conference

Offered by the Continuing Education Company, the Primary Care Conference offers practical and useful information designed to help primary care providers stay up-to-date in rapidly changing therapeutic areas. Program objectives include improving provider capacity for assessment, accurate diagnosis, optimal care, common therapeutic issues management, comprehensive evidence-based interventions and treatment strategies, and improved long-term outcomes.

Examples of topics from the 2020 conference include acust care essentials for primary care providers, Covid-19 and ARDS in primary care, how to keep heart failure patients out of the hospital, and medical management of common co-morbid problems of obesity. Those who cannot travel physically to the conference can attend workshops live for the same CE credit, or may watch the session asynchronously for 30 days following the conference.

  • Date: June 28 – July 2, 2021 (Session 1); July 5-9, 2021 (Session 2)
  • Location: Kiawah Island, South Carolina
  • Cost: $685 (in person); $575 (virtual)
  • CE Opportunities: 20 contact hours

12th Annual Essentials in Primary Care Summer Conference

Also offered by the Continuing Education Company, the essentials in primary care summer conference is similar in scope and purpose to the 29th annual summer conference listed above. Sessions offered in 2020 for this conference include office orthopedics in primary care, diagnosis of migraine, depression (diagnosis and treatment), nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, and updates on resistant hypertension.

  • Date: July 12-16, 2021
  • Location: Palm Coast, Florida
  • Cost: $685 (in person); $575 (virtual)
  • CE Opportunities: 20 contact hours

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Conferences

ISPN 2021 Annual Conference

The theme for the International Society of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurses (ISPN) is “Resiliency in Action: Advocating for Healthy Communities.” In addition to keynote speakers and educational opportunities, the ISPN conference awards PMHNPs with outstanding contributions in clinical practice, diversity and equity, education, research, leadership, lectureship, and psychiatric mental health advocacy.

Topics in the 2020 virtual conference included a Covid-19 expert panel, social justice and responsibilities in psych-mental health advanced practice, moving from practice to praxis, and 360-degree person-centered care: art inspired reflective practices to guide holistic psychopharmacologic assessment and treatment. In addition to didactic lectures, this conference also features circles of connections – topics that bring NPs together to discuss topics like fear and hope, and practice skills like deep listening.

  • Date: March 23-25, 2021
  • Location: Virtual
  • Cost (in 2020): $225 (student) – $670 (non-member)
  • CE Opportunities (in 2020): 26.6 contact hours

APNA 35th Annual Conference

The topic for the American Psychiatric Nurses Association Annual Conference is “Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurses: Revolutionizing Access to Person-Centered Care.” The APNA conference offers more than 100 sessions, boasts attendance of more than 1,800 RNs and APRNs, and, through the recording of sessions, opens PMHNPs to more than 100 CE contact hours after the conference closes.

Topics in the virtual 34th annual conference in 2020 included reproductive grief care, providing psychiatric services to aslyees and refugees who are survivors of torture, successful partnerships for youth suicide prevention, and ketamine/esketamine as treatment options. In June 2020, 98 percent of attendees reported satisfaction with the virtual conference experience.

  • Date: October 2021 (estimated)
  • Location: TBD
  • Cost (in 2020): $275 (one day) – $895 (full conference, non-member)
  • CE Opportunities: 20+ contact hours
Becca Brewer

Becca Brewer


Becca Brewer is building a better future on a thriving earth by healing herself into wholeness, divesting from separation, and walking the path of the loving heart. Previously to her journey as an adventurer for a just, meaningful, and regenerative world, Becca was a formally trained sexuality educator with a master of education.