How To Become A Nurse Practitioner: A practitioner nurse, also known as an advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) are highly skilled healthcare professionals who play a vital role in providing quality patient care and improving healthcare outcomes.
ARPN is a highly trained and educated nurse who has completed a master’s or doctoral degree in nursing and has obtained advanced clinical skills and knowledge beyond that of a registered nurse (RN). APRNs have specialized training in diagnosis and treatment, prescribing medication, and providing healthcare services to patients across the lifespan.
If you are willing to pursue a career as a practice nurse, we guide you in this article on how to become a practitioner nurse and enter a rewarding career. Before knowing the steps to become a practice nurse you should have to understand the difference between an RN and NP.
You might also read this: How to Treat Victim in Shock After an Accident?
Difference between RNs and NPs
Registered nurses (RNs) typically have a two- or four-year degree in nursing and are licensed to provide basic nursing care, such as administering medication, monitoring vital signs, and providing patient education.
RNs work under the supervision of physicians or nurse practitioners and may specialize in areas such as pediatrics, emergency care, critical care, or medical-surgical nursing.
In contrast, nurse practitioners (NPs) are advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) who have completed a master’s or doctoral degree in nursing and have obtained additional clinical training in a specialized area of healthcare.
NPs are authorized to diagnose and treat common medical conditions, prescribe medications, and provide other healthcare services, such as ordering and interpreting diagnostic tests and developing treatment plans. NPs work independently or collaboratively with physicians and other healthcare professionals to provide comprehensive and patient-centered care.
Overall, both nurses and nurse practitioners play critical roles in providing healthcare services. Nurse practitioners have a more advanced level of education and clinical training, and can provide a wider range of healthcare services, including diagnosing and treating medical conditions.
But the main difference between a nurse and a nurse practitioner is the level of education, clinical training, and scope of practice.
Steps on How To Become A Nurse Practitioner
If you are interested in pursuing a career in healthcare that offers a high level of autonomy, advanced clinical skills, and the opportunity to make a positive impact on the lives of patients If so, becoming a nurse practitioner may be the right path for you. Here are the steps you need to follow in order to become an APRN.
1. Obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Degree
The first thing on the way to becoming a nurse practitioner is to earn a BSN degree from an accredited nursing program. This typically takes four years and involves completing coursework in anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, and nursing theory. During your BSN program, you’ll also complete clinical rotations in a variety of healthcare settings to gain hands-on experience.
2. Obtain a Nursing License
Once you get a BSN degree, you will need to obtain a nursing license by passing the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN). This exam is designed to test your knowledge and competency in nursing practice.
3. Gain Clinical Experience
Most nurse practitioner programs require applicants to have several years of clinical nursing experience, typically as registered nurses (RN). This experience provides valuable insights into the healthcare system, patient care, and clinical decision-making, which will be essential in your future role as a nurse practitioner.
4. Complete a Nurse Practitioner Program
Following the necessary clinical experience, you will need to complete a nurse practitioner program, which typically takes an additional 2-4 years. These programs are offered at the master’s or doctoral level and may specialize in a particular area of healthcare, such as family practice, pediatrics, women’s health, or mental health.
During your nurse practitioner program, you will learn advanced clinical skills such as diagnosis and treatment, prescribing medicine, and providing healthcare services to patients. You’ll also complete clinical rotations in a variety of healthcare settings to gain hands-on experience in your chosen specialty.
5. Obtain Certification
Once you complete the nurse practitioner program, you will need to obtain certification from a recognized certifying organization. These certification requirements vary depending on the specialty area and certifying organization. However, most require you to pass a certification exam that tests your knowledge and competency in your chosen specialty.
6. Obtain Licensure as an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN)
In order to practice as a nurse practitioner, you will need to obtain licensure as an APRN in your state. The licensure requirements vary by state and may include completing continuing education requirements and passing a certification exam.
Once you’ve completed all the steps, you’ll be ready to practice as a nurse practitioner in your chosen specialty area.
Becoming a nurse practitioner requires a significant amount of education, clinical training, and certification. However, it can be a rewarding career that offers a high level of autonomy and the opportunity to provide advanced healthcare services to patients.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the highest nursing degree?
In nursing, the highest level of education is the doctoral degree. There are many positions that require a doctoral degree in nursing, including advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs), as well as leadership positions, such as chief nursing officer or director of nursing.
Which nurse is in high demand?
As the nature of the job, ICU and Critical Care Nurses are considered to be among the highest-paid nursing professions. Upon completing a B.Sc. in Nursing, you can pursue a Diploma in Critical Care Nursing in order to pursue a career in ICU and Critical Care Nursing.
What is the lowest nursing degree?
As the name suggests, CNAs provide assistance to nurses with patient admissions and vital signs. It is the lowest-level credential related to the nursing field and is the quickest means of entry into the field.
What is the job of a nurse practitioner?
Nurse Practitioner responsibilities include:
Promoting and preventing disease, as well as providing treatment to patients. Diagnosing and treating chronic and acute conditions, including diabetes, high blood pressure, infections, and injuries. The prescription of medications in order to ensure the health and well-being of patients.
What type of nurse is best paid?
Highest Paid Nursing Jobs:
1- Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist – $202,000.
2- Nursing Administrator – $120,000.
3- Neonatal Intensive Care Nurse – $120,000.
4- General Nurse Practitioner – $118,000.
5- Critical Care Nurse – $118,000.
6- Certified Nurse Midwife – $114,000.
7- Informatics Nurse – $102,000.
8- Clinical Nurse Specialist – $95,000.
Is a practitioner higher than a nurse?
Since nurse practitioners have gained more education and experience than registered nurses, they hold more responsibility in their work setting. An important distinction between a nurse practitioner and a registered nurse can be found in their educational backgrounds.