Getting Registered Or Licensed By The State You Practice In
The final step to becoming a nurse practitioner is registration or licensure for the state in which you will practice. There is wide variance in the conditions for registration or licensure that states may impose on NP practice. Some, for example, may have requirements for completing a supervised or collaborative practice.
A related issue to state regulation of nursing is full practice authority. Nurse practitioners, depending on where they live, may have the autonomy to perform their job duties like interpreting diagnostic tests or prescribing medication without the supervision of a physician or physicians assistant. There has been a recent shift in expanding the practice scope of NPs and APRNs, with legislation being passed in increasing numbers that grants full practice authority through a state nursing board.
Full practice authority in many cases is being leveraged to bring high-quality care within reach of underserved or rural patient populations. Leaning on NPs to deliver this care, as well as meet the increasing demand for health care amid a nursing shortage, has spurred several states to reconsider their laws on full practice authority.
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Cardiac Nurse Practitioner Licensure And Certification
Cardiology NPs must be licensed in the state where they practice and hold a certification for an NP from the American Board of Cardiovascular Medicine. Certification provides a process for validation of a nurses’ education and professional expertise. It meets the needs of employers and assures consumers you have met current standards of practice.
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What Certification And Licensing Will I Need
Once youve earned your MSN or DNP in a nurse practitioner-focused program, youre ready to take your certification exam and become certified. The American Association of Nurse Practitioners Certification Board and the American Nurses Credentialing Center both offer nationally recognized certification exams for NPs. Your specialization will dictate which organization you can be certified by, although there is some overlap within a few specialties. There are additional certifying agenciessuch as the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board , the National Certification Corporation , and othersthat offer certification to NPs who subspecialize.
Once youve been certified, youll be able to pursue a NP license in your state. NPs must renew their certification and state licenses periodically, typically by completing continuing education courses and fulfilling other requirements.
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How To Become A Nurse Practitioner: Degrees And Requirements
Becoming a nurse practitioner is a popular and exciting career choice. Nurse practitioners deliver primary and emergency care to patients, diagnose and treat illnesses, and prescribe medication. In 23 states, NPs have full practice authority, meaning they can practice independently without the supervision of a physician.
The path to becoming a nurse practitioner may look a little different for everyone, but in general, there are specific academic and licensure credentials you must obtain. From your bachelors through your graduate degree, you can expect to be in school for at least seven years. After you earn your graduate degree, you must also pass a national certification exam. This blog post outlines the responsibilities of nurse practitioners, discusses how to become a nurse practitioner, and provides a brief overview of the current job landscape and opportunities.
Popular Nurse Practitioner Courses
Courses vary among the best NP schools, but most programs require core and elective classes, along with clinical/practicum hours. Degree level and specialization will influence coursework.
An NP curriculum usually covers advanced health evaluation, nursing ethics, advanced pharmacology, and issues in healthcare policy. Below, we describe five common courses for nurse practitioner students.
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Seven Nurse Practitioner Career Outlook
Nursing is already a stable, in-demand career. But becoming a Nurse Practitioner can give you even more job security.
The BLS predicts that nurse practitioner jobs will increase by 45 percent from 2020 to 2030, which is much faster than most other careers.
The need for primary care is also expected to rise over the next five years because of the aging population. NPs will help meet this increasing demand, especially in underserved areas.
Can Nurse Practitioners Practice Independently
Currently, more than 25 states allow nurse practitioners to practice independently. This means they can open their own clinics and treat their own patients without needing a physician to oversee the practice. The ability to practice independently creates a great opportunity for nurse practitioners and for the communities they serve.
Youll see independent nurse practitioners in more rural states because getting providers there is difficult, Dixon said. “Physicians tend to work in bigger cities where they can focus on a specialty, so the need for general practitioners in more rural communities is great.
This is a wonderful trend, in Dixons opinion. The fact that nurse practitioners have independent clinical opportunities in more states and are able to serve even more people is amazing, she said.
Dixon also feels nurse practitioners emphasize helping the patient actively participate in their care.
If I prescribe amoxicillin, but the patient doesnt take it because they dont understand how or why theyre taking it, the problem won’t be fixed,” Dixon said. But when the patient truly understands the purpose of their treatment plan, they are more apt to participate. The nurse practitioners emphasis on patient education and relationship-building is the bridge.
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Top Bsn To Np Programs
Considerations we used to rank each program below include affordability, length of the programs, accreditation status, program flexibility, and academic quality. Each of the programs on this list is accredited by the CCNE.
John Hopkins offers BSN to NP programs specializing in adult-geriatric, family practice, pediatric, and psychiatric care. Each program results in the student earning a DNP credential. Most programs can be completed remotely with onsite clinical rotations in the student’s location.
- Tuition: $1,738 per credit
Apply To A Nurse Practitioner Program
Apply to a nurse practitioner program thats accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education . You can pursue a masters degree in nursing or postgraduate degree program, and even target online offerings, such as online MSN programs.
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Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
An adult gerontology primary care nurse practitioner focuses on preventive healthcare and management of acute and chronic health issues in adults . From conducting wellness exams and educating families on disease prevention to performing diagnostic screenings, AG-PCNPs have multiple duties in a variety of healthcare settings, including internal medicine units, clinics, student health centers and ambulatory care centers.
How Long Will Earning A Nurse Practitioner Degree Take
The length of time it takes to become a nurse practitioner depends mostly on the degree you hold when you start and the degree you are hoping to eventually earn, but between two and four years is the average.
Youll need to hold an RN license before you can start an NP program. This means youll need to earn at least an associate degree or, more commonly, a bachelors degree. An ADN generally takes around two years, while a BSN will take around four.
It generally takes two to four years to become a nurse practitioner.
You can go straight to an MSN program as an RN with an associate degree, but this bridge program will take longer than it would to earn your MSN if you already had a BSN. Generally, you can complete an MSN in around two years, but a bridge program could take as many as three. Plus, BSN-educated nurses can take their own bridge, going straight from a BSN to a DNP with BSN-DNP programs.
If youre looking to earn your doctorate, it can take anywhere from three to six years. The length of time will depend on your program, program structure, specialty, and more. Some DNP programs will also require extensive clinical hours, which can add to the length.
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Online Nurse Practitioner Programs
Online programs are ideal for various nursing professionals with busy schedules as they allow the entirety or majority of coursework to be completed remotely. They are flexible and give students the opportunity to work around their schedule.
While online programs are inclusive to all lifestyles, nurses with the following lifestyles may especially benefit from online programs:
- Working nurses
- Nurses with difficult and/or set schedules
Key Differences For Online Nurse Practitioner Programs
In general, the requirements for an online NP program are generally the same for an in-person NP program. However, there are a few differences:
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Nurse Practitioner Prerequisite Courses
A licensed RN will not generally need to demonstrate a lot in the way of specific coursework. It is generally assumed that these requirements were met at the pre-nursing or nursing level. The admissions department, though, may want to see coursework in statistics, completed in the relatively recent past. There are statistics courses designed specifically to address the needs of healthcare professionals. However, the student may be allowed to matriculate on the strength of other statistics coursework.
A career changer, on the other hand, may need to provide transcripts for a number of specific prerequisite courses . Typical requirements include the following:
- Anatomy and physiology
Having a strong anatomy and physiology background is crucial. The student will likely need a two semester sequence of anatomy and physiology or two discrete courses before matriculation advanced physiology and pathophysiology will be included in the NP course of study.
Grades are a factor, but this isnt medical school. The minimum GPA may be a 3.0. Weakness in one area is sometimes negated by strength in another. Whatever his or her background, the future nurse practitioner should be aware that the process is competitive. When assessing readiness for application, one may want to take into account the description of the typical admitted student, not just the minimums.
Get Your Bachelor’s Degree
If you dont already hold a BSN, you may want to enroll in and earn your Bachelors in Nursing Science degree. Nurses who have their ADN can enroll in accelerated RN-BSN programs, many of which can be completed online. It is possible to go straight from your ADN to an MSN program if you want to skip the step of earning your Bachelor’s degree, however.
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Complete A Graduate Program
All NPs require a masters degree or doctorate. The standard degree choice is a master of science in nursing, which takes between one and two years to complete. Options of part-time or full-time degree programs allow students to choose the schedule that best fits their lives.
All MSN students must declare a population specialty/patient population. This specialization will determine the coursework the student completes. A graduate will be most qualified for positions within their specialty.
Most MSN degrees, even online degrees, require a certain amount of clinical experience. Most graduate programs include clinical experience requirements. Students who complete online degrees may fulfill their clinical requirements at local clinics or their places of employment.
Direct Entry Nurse Practitioner Programs
If youre not a nurse but have a degree in another field, you can enroll in a direct entry nurse practitioner program. Essentially, you take an accelerated nursing program in about one year for the first portion of the program to be eligible for the NCLEX, then you continue on to the NP coursework for the second half of the program. Many schools also recommend that with this option, course participants take at least a year between the first and sections to gain hands-on clinical experience as well.
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Six Nurse Practitioner Salary
Nurse practitioners earn a median average annual salary of $120,680 in the United States according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2022, which places their income at more than double the average annual salary for all other occupations.
Nurse Practitioners make, on average, around $30,000 more than Registered Nurses each year. And compared to an LPNs annual wages of $46,240, becoming an NP will more than DOUBLE your earnings.
Bachelor Of Science In Nursing Requirements
Many colleges and universities offer BSN-to-NP programs that require candidates to hold an RN license and a BSN. While admission requirements vary between institutions, applicants can expect some similarities between programs.
Prospective BSN students should provide a completed application along with their official high school transcripts. Most schools expect candidates to meet a minimum GPA requirement, usually between 2.5 and 3.0. Other admissions materials can include letters of recommendation, a statement of purpose, and ACT or SAT test scores.
Some programs require degree-seekers to demonstrate at least one year of prior nursing experience, although many BSN-holders go directly into an NP program without practicing as an RN first. In addition, students can often earn their degree online and complete their clinical hours at a location near their residence.
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Become A Certified Nurse Practitioner
Be sure to review information on licensure and regulatory requirements in your state. The AANP is a good resource.
To become licensed to practice as a nurse practitioner, you will need to take a national certification exam. You can take this exam through any of five national certification boards, including the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners , the National Certification Corporation , or the American Nurses Credentialing Center . Each organizations exam is different, so you should research the focus and format of each one and consider your personal career goals and testing preferences when deciding which exam to take.
Nurse Practitioner Licensure And Certification
NPs must earn and maintain two types of credentials: state licensure and national board certification. Candidates seeking board certification take an exam that tests their competency in her or his specialty area, and the certification and graduate education specialties must match. State nursing boards require national certification for NP licensure.
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Where Do Nps Work
Nurse practitioners are in high demand across America. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that nurse practitioner positions will grow 28% between 2018 and 2028, well above the national average for all occupations of 5%. According to the AANP, in 2019, there were 270,000 NPs nationwide a number thats grown from 171,000 in 2013 and 82,000 in 2001.
Given that NPs specialize in a number of care areas, they can find employment in numerous different settings, including, but not limited to:
- Hospitals and medical clinics
- Primary care private practices
- Community clinics
Overall, the median national salary for NPs in 2018, according to the BLS, was just more than $107,000. However, that figure could increase depending on the work setting, with the highest salaries for NPs available in state, local and private hospitals.
Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
An adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner provides advanced nursing care to older adults with acute, chronic, or critical conditions. In order to stabilize and improve the health of patients, an AG-ACNP must work in tandem with a host of healthcare professionals, often in an emergency or short-term care environment. By efficiently evaluating the patients condition and responses to treatment, an AG-ACNP continuously adapts the patient management plan as needed.
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Earn Your Ms In Nursing Online At St John Fisher University
Earn an M.S. in Nursing online at the Wegmans School of Nursing. Bachelors in nursing and RN license-required.
- Part-time and accelerated tracks available
- Four program options: PCFNP, PMHNP, AGACNP, AGPCNP
Another common question is How much does it cost to become a nurse practitioner? The cost varies depending on where you enroll for undergraduate and graduate school, and whether or not you pursue your Doctor of Nursing Practice degree. Fees for nursing programs vary from state to state, as well as across program formats. For example, online nursing programs may help cut down on costs related to transportation to and from classes.
Becoming A Licensed Registered Nurse
Once youve graduated with a BSN, you should be prepared to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses , which is administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing . This is a test of the skills and knowledge gained during an undergraduate education, and whether nurses can effectively and safely apply what they learned in care settings.
If you hold a BSN from an accredited nursing program, youll likely be eligible to sit for the exam. Other degrees may not meet eligibility criteria, so be sure to check with your state board. The exam consists of a minimum of 75 questions and a maximum of 265 questions that assess four areas of practice:
Test questions may cover a range of topics, including abnormalities in vital signs, mental health concepts, informed consent and health promotion, among many other concepts. Physiological integrity makes up the bulk of the examination, accounting for up to two-thirds of all questions. The NCLEX-RN is administered in-person and electronically. Individuals have up to six hours to complete as much of the examination as they can. If you fail, you must wait 45 days until the next attempt. Nurses get eight attempts per year and there is no maximum lifetime number of attempts, although varying state regulations may apply. It costs $200 to sit for each instance of the NCLEX-RX.
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