Are you a student considering a career as a Nurse Practitioner but would like to know a bit more? Are you currently a registered nurse looking for a new career change?

Have you worked alongside a Nurse Practitioner and are curious as to how to become one? On the other hand, are you looking to advance your career opportunities and feel you are ready for a challenge? Then wonderful! This guide will cover everything you need to know to pursue a career as a Nurse Practitioner! Read on!

Become a Nurse Practitioner

Quick Summary

Becoming a Nurse Practitioner gives you a distinct advantage and a competitive edge within the nursing field. The best time to be a Nurse Practitioner is now!

Becoming a Nurse Practitioner will take your nursing skills to the next level. If you choose to become a Nurse Practitioner then you will function much like a doctor would, you’re going to be (but not limited to) ordering tests, interpreting tests, diagnosing patients, treating patients, and prescribing medications.

Recommended Degree Level: Masters of Science in Nursing (MSN)

License required: Unrestricted Registered Nursing (RN) License

Certification Available: American Nurse Credentialing Center (ANCC) offers to credential nurse practitioners needing certification.

How much does a Nurse Practitioner earn? The Median annual salary is $102,670*

Table of Contents

What does a Nurse Practitioner (NP) do?

Gone are the days of physicians only treating patients. A Nurse Practitioner can now successfully handle traditional duties once only performed by doctors. I guess you can view a Nurse Practitioner as a Nurse Doctor… well, sort of.

Becoming a Nurse Practitioner is a blend between a traditional Registered Nurse (Nursing Realm) and a Physician (Medicine Realm). As a Nurse Practitioner, you will be functioning as a Medical Provider and treat patients just like a doctor does.

Some nurse practitioners are required to work in collaboration with a physician. While in other states, there may be no legal requirement for nurse practitioners to have physician involvement.

Physician supervision does not mean a doctor standing over your shoulder micro-managing you; many doctors do not need to be physically present to supervise you. However, they are always a phone call away and commonly know everything that is going on at their clinic or hospital sector.

As a Nurse Practitioner, you will need a Master’s degree to sit for your necessary certification to become a state-licensed Nurse Practitioner. However, what is two more years of schooling to earn nearly DOUBLE the income of what a traditional Registered Nurse earns.

Not to mention there is a huge physician shortage going on in rural areas within the United States. Many hospitals in rural parts of the U.S find it hard to recruit physicians this means great opportunities for Nurse Practitioners to practice.

Nurse Practitioners play a major role in the medical field as they help to fill the gap in the absence of seeing a physician. They also provided an alternative for patients who could not always afford to see a doctor.

Nurse practitioner Guide

Nurse Practitioners Must Use Good Judgement Skills

Nurse practitioners are trained to observe and have excellent judgment skills when it comes to diagnosing an injury or illness. They will often consult with a physician to get a second opinion if they are unsure about something.

If the patient’s condition is too complicated or does not fall under their state’s code scope of nursing practice, they will have to refer patients to a physician or specialist.

Do They Have Written Protocols They Must Follow to Help Them When Treating Patients?

Yes, The Nurse Practitioner does have written rules they follow when treating patients. For example, let us say a patient has symptoms that are not responsive to antibiotics, and it is the patient’s second visit then the nurse practitioner must request the patient provide a urine specimen and culture.

If the urine sample is positive for a urinary tract infection the nurse practitioner will need to prescribe the next antibiotic on their prescription table provided the patient is not allergic to it.

Another example of protocol a nurse practitioner may follow is if a patient is allergic to all antibiotics listed in the nurse practitioner’s prescriptive table, the written protocol advises the nurse practitioner to consult with the physician for treatment.

Many Patients Feel Nurse Practitioners Provide Better Communication

Patients are often are happy to see nurse practitioners walk through the door but on the other hand, some patients are a little surprised and unsure of what the Nurse Practitioner does. Alternatively, what role does the Nurse Practitioner has? Patients are often surprised by what a great experience they had with a Nurse Practitioner.

Becoming a Nurse practitioner you will need to be able to pull patients in, meaning know how to strike up a conversation to make them feel more relaxed and comfortable even if it is talking about the weather; patients have reported appreciating this extra effort.

Not to mention Research shows according to a study by The Congress Office Assessment Study that when it comes to preventive care and communication, many nurse practitioners surpass doctors.

Many nurse practitioners who work in collaboration with doctors have agreements in place to treat patients that are not fee-based, so I guess you can say nurse practitioners have no quotas to fill.

This allows nurse practitioners more time for each patient thus making their role more valuable while additionally providing a better patient experience.

Can Nurse Practitioners Earn Specialized Certifications?

Nurse practitioners have what is known as a field specialization. This just means the nurse practitioner has chosen a specialty group of people (patient population) to specialize in.

This could be working with toddlers or adults or even woman, and some nurse practitioners can specialize in midwifery and work with pregnant women.

A good majority of nurse practitioners decide to focus on becoming a family nurse practitioner this allows them a broad scope they can practice.

By selecting this specialty, you can work with people of all ages to treat, counsel, and educate patients. There are about a dozen certifications offered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center available.

How Do Nurse Practitioners and Physicians Work Together?

Some states will require that the nurse practitioner and the physician sign a written agreement to indicate how the physician will participate in the nurse practitioner’s practice.

The written consent will future cover what medications the nurse practitioner can prescribe and if the doctor may need to sign off the prescription.

By entering into this agreement, this also allows the physician and nurse practitioner to have a deal that clearly states the individual and shared responsibilities that expected of each of their roles

Nurse Practitioners Practice Treating the Whole Person, Not Just the Illness

Many Nurse Practitioners practice holistic nursing meaning they focus on the whole patient’s body and life to see how one may be affecting the other.

They are almost like a detective when they need to find out what is causing the patient’s illness or what the patient may be doing in his or her life that may be contributing/worsening their illness or disease.

NPs may ask the patient about their social activities, lifestyle patterns, are they dealing with stressful situations, do they have support, and so forth.

Because the Nurse Practitioner understands no two patients are alike, and every patient is unique and needs to be treated differently. Many also know treatment on one level will influence impact treatment on all levels for the patient.

The Nurse Practitioner promotes health counseling and education for patients. The Nurse Practitioner will educate patients to become self-aware of their lifestyle choices that may be hindering them from being healed.

This in return helps to empower the patient to make wiser lifestyle decisions and reduce their recurring hospital visits.

What is the Nurse Practitioner’s Job Duties?

Nurse practitioners Are Responsible For:

Treating Patients – Nurse practitioners are responsible for directing patient care, reviewing the patient’s health history, and formulating a care plan. They also are responsible for evaluating the treatment plan as well as following up with patients.

The Nurse Practitioner performs a broad range of services that includes providing immunizations, conducting physical exams, and treating chronic conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes.

Diagnosing Mild and Chronic Ailments– The nurse practitioner is responsible for diagnosing illnesses, chronic diseases, and conditions.

Ordering Routine Tests – They order laboratory tests to find out what may cause a patient’s disease or to rule out illness. Some tests will include cultures, blood tests, or even a urine specimen.

It will just depend on what the patient’s symptoms are as well as the patient’s overall health. Once the test results come back, the nurse practitioner must also know how to interpret accurately the results and decide if they will need to consult further with a physician.

Prescribing Medications – Many states are authorized to prescribe medications but may need the physician’s signature to approve the prescription.

Referring Patients – Nurse practitioners will use judgment skills to decide if the patient’s condition is too complex or needs referring to a specialist.

Performing Minor Surgeries- This could be performing patient biopsies, providing castings for patients who break an arm or leg, and surgical sutures – stitches for injuries.

Promoting Health Education – Disease prevention and health promotion for healthy living are where nurse practitioners shine, their goal is to counsel and teach families, individuals, and groups on how to stay healthy. This is a large part of a nurse practitioner’s role which is health counseling.

This keeps healthcare costs down for patients as they become more educated to make better lifestyle choices.

Utilizing Research Skills- Nurse practitioners are considered researchers, educators, and life-long learners. They will promote the use of research among colleagues and staff to provide better patient outcomes.

Are Nurse Practitioners Substitute Doctors?

No! Even though a nurse practitioner and a physician sometimes provide similar services, there are differences in their core expertise. Nurse practitioners and doctors may often view their patients differently.

A nurse practitioner may use evidence-based knowledge as well as holistic, individualized patient care. What this means is the nurse practitioner is interested in addressing the patient’s overall lifestyle choices, gender, age, cultural differences, sexual orientation, disabilities to provide the patient the best individualized patient care.

This ties into the patient’s physical, mental and spiritual well-being along with the whole body and what lifestyle modifications may be needed to promote and keep the patient as healthy as possible. This is why some people may say nurse practitioners take nursing to the next level.

Do I have what it takes to be a Nurse Practitioner?

Deciding to become a Nurse Practitioner (NP) often includes treating the whole patient not just their disease. NPs main element is helping people. Pursuing a career as an NP you must enjoy working with people and many times you will work independently.

That may sound cliché but if you’re looking for a job where you are behind a desk that is slower paced this will not be the career for you. NP work is hands-on and sometimes fast-paced. You’re on your feet visiting patient after patient.

Some days you will treat three patients while other days you will manage 12! This could mean treating a patient with the stomach flu, a patient who may consume too much alcohol or even someone who struggles with an eating disorder.

You must prepare yourself as you will work with patients that have a variety of health complaints so must commit yourself steadily learning to be able to keep up with the rapid changes within the medical field.

You must have above average communication skills as you will be working one on one with patients and will need to know how to encourage your patients sometimes to answer questions about personal matters they may find it difficult to speak about.

Your role will include discussing how a patient’s lifestyle choices such as excessive smoking may be affecting their overall health. Some patients will need this connection brought to their attention.

Other days you must be mentally prepared to work with other professional colleagues who may not like taking orders from anyone that is not a physician. To meet the healthcare needs of the patients being a team player is critical as you will often collaborate with other health care professionals.

To better see if you have what it takes to become a Nurse Practitioner you should ask yourself…

  • Do I enjoy working with people?
  • Does the practice of medicine interest me?
  • Do I enjoy teaching and counseling?
  • Do I enjoy leadership positions?
  • Can I commit to making a difference in peoples live?
  • Do I have good judgment skills?
  • Can I stay calm in sometimes an unpredictable environment?
  • Can I be a good active listener?
  • If so then great this could just be the career for you!

Nurse Practitioner Salary

How much do nurse practitioners make?

By pursuing this career, you can expect to bring home a healthy salary. Your specialty area of practice and your actual geographic location.

The Department of Labor and Statistics 2020 guide shows the median annual salary for a Nurse Practitioner is $117,670*

Who Will Hire Me?

As a Nurse Practitioner, you will have many options for employment in many settings. Below are some example settings that would be interested in hiring you or if working for someone else does not interest you, you could consider opening up your practice.

  • Hospitals
  • Physician Offices
  • Community Health Clinics
  • Health Departments
  • Health Maintenance Organizations
  • Home Health Care Programs
  • Hospice Centers
  • Urgent Care Centers

How to choose the best Nurse Practitioner Specialty

When deciding on which specialty to pursue you must first consider your interests both now and in the future. One of the most important considerations you must look out is pursuing a specialty that is in line with your future career goals.

Nobody likes to feel stuck or boxed in and besides this is your life, and you must select a specialty you feel most comfortable with.

Many people already know that early on working with a particular population is just not for me, some nurse practitioners have had an enjoyable experience in a hospital setting and knew that is a better fit for them.

Some nurse practitioners do not just commit to just one particular population and decide family practicing is more appealing, family practice certifications allow nurse practitioners a large scope of practice with patients of all ages and genders.

One good way to select a specialty is to understand what each specialty has to offer you by spending time with experts in the specialties you are considering.

In the meantime, there are several specialties available and some may even be similar to your nursing background if you already are a working nurse.

The best way to choose a nursing specialty is to evaluate your past nursing experiences, were they right or just overall bad?

Once you know what you like and what you do not like it is easier to narrow down your selection.

Types of Nurse Practitioners

The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) has close to 12 Specialty Certifications for Nurse Practitioners to become certified in.

Below are a few popular NPs certifications offered through the ANCC:

Does providing critical care to patients interest you? Do you enjoy a faster-paced environment? If you answered, “Yes,” then this may be a certification worth obtaining.

By obtaining the Acute Care Nurse Practitioner certification, you will be focusing on providing patient care to the critically ill. You will additionally focus on caring for patients that may need emergency surgery and have experienced physical trauma.

NPs’ primary goals will be working with patients to get them back functioning and back to their previous health levels.

Certification offered: Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (ACNP)

If you are only interested in working only providing primary care to adult patients then the Adult Nurse Practitioner certification could be for you. Obtaining this certification will allow you to treat and evaluate a vast spectrum of adult patients from broad and diverse backgrounds. This certification will enable you to handle patients over the age of 21.

The salary for Adult Nurse Practitioner: The median annual salary for an Adult Nurse Practitioner according to is $88,976.

Certification offered: Adult Nurse Practitioner (ANP)

Does working with patients that have a mental illness such as schizophrenia, attention-deficient hyper disorder, anxiety, or even substance problems interest you? Then consider the Mental Health Nurse Practitioner certification that could best fit you. Working within this sector you will need a lot of patience and understanding.

NPs diligently evaluate patients to whom they are providing the psych medications for. Mental health nurse practitioners’ role requires them to follow up with patients to see if the medication is working or not working adjusting the dosage as needed.

Some mental health NPs seek alternative methods should the patient’s current treatment plan be ineffective to better help heal and stabilize the patient…

The salary for Mental Health Nurse Practitioner: The median annual salary for Mental Health Nurse Practitioner according to is $90,662.

Certification offered: Adult Psychiatric–Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP)

  • Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)

The most common specialty that can provide you broadest scope of practice is a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) certification. Many nurse practitioners who choose this specialty FNPs work in community health clinics.

If you select this certification to pursue you will be providing primary care to patients of all ages, now this can be a good thing or pose several challenges.

One thing about this specialty is that it offers quite a bit of flexibility and change as you will get to work with a diverse range of patients. This specialty is not so predictable, and you may welcome the diversity and flexibility this certification will offer.

The salary for Family Nurse Practitioner: The median annual salary for Family Nurse Practitioner according to is $84,785.

Certification offered: Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)

What about working with older adults? Would you like a chance to provide treatment services for senior citizens? Then perhaps you should pursue a certification as a Gerontological Nurse Practitioner (GNP), many Gerontological Nurse Practitioners find employment in nursing homes across the U.S.

Elderly patients do require more one-on-one time as they are not as mobile as younger adults are.

Nevertheless, working with the elderly offers many benefits. Elderly patients have quite a bit of advice they enjoy passing on to nurses and medical staff, their sense of gratitude can make your experience as a nurse practitioner rewarding.

Working with elderly patients will have its challenges. However, when you’re working in such tight quarters day after day and seeing the same patients more often than not you can form life-long friendships that are beneficial to you and your patient.

The salary for Gerontological Nurse Practitioner: The median annual salary for a Gerontological Nurse Practitioner according to is $88,189.

Certification offered: Gerontological Nurse Practitioner (GNP)

  • Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner

Are you great with children? Do you even like children? If you answered yes, then great the Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner specialty may be worth exploring. Your job will entail providing primary care to infants all the up to adolescents.

As a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner is keeping kids healthy but also making sure their physical, mental, and social development is within medical norms for his or her age group. Your job will be to help parents make smart health choices to ensure their kids are developing at a healthy rate.

The salary for Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner: The median annual salary for Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner according to is $79,025.

Certification offered: Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (PPCNP)

Does a school-based environment interest you? Would like a career where you can have a more work robust schedule? Then exploring a certification as a School Nurse Practitioner may be a better choice.

Many Nurse Practitioners enjoy working with students from elementary to high school to provide patient care on-site. You may need to work with the children outside primary care providers if needed. You may also provide health screenings, health assessments and treat minor patient medical conditions.

The salary for School Nurse Practitioner: The median annual salary for School Nurse Practitioner according to is $85,000.

Certification offered: School Nurse Practitioner (SNP)

Here is a quick overview of what steps needed to become a Nurse Practitioner:

  1. Complete your Bachelors of Science in Nursing (BSN)
  2. Sit and pass national licensing to become a Registered Nurse (RN)
  3. Complete your Master’s Degree program for Nurse Practitioners (MDN-NP)
  4. Finally, take your Nurse Practitioner examination through American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Board (AANPCP)

Educational and certification program overview:

What makes Nurse Practitioner different from traditional nurses is their education. Pursuing this career will take time, commitment, and dedication but can offer a career that no one can take away from you!

Becoming a Nurse Practitioner does require a Master’s Degree along with specialty credentials, so it is best to start pursuing your degrees as soon as possible.

Once you decide that pursuing a career, as a nurse practitioner is the right path for you then you want to consider which school is right for you. Many online programs combine both online and ground campus options. This can offer you a more convenient way to pursue your degree.

Obtaining your Associates Degree

Receiving your Associate of Science in Nursing degree (ASN) will help you kick start your nursing career and allow you to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree later on. There are several benefits of completing this program as this level is designed to teach you how to provide nursing care in hospitals that are within several settings. You also can work in entry-level positions in clinics and health-related offices.

While pursuing this degree, you will learn essential health care functions and what patient standards are needed for nursing. You will also study theory and the practice of nursing.

Some examples of courses you will take are human anatomy, nutrition, psychology, statistics, and microbiology.

Many students who graduate with their Associate’s Degree in Nursing (ADN) go on to register with the National Council Licensure exam board to take their NCLEX-RN licensure to become registered nurses. Once you begin to work as a registered nurse, you will obtain real-world experience that will be needed as you move up in the ranks as you advance your career. This degree typically takes two years to complete.

If you have already obtained a nursing diploma at a hospital-based nursing school and would like to get your ADN, then this is a possible option.

This option is becoming less popular among student nurses. Due to many hospital diploma nursing programs closing.

Aside from an ADN program if you already hold a certificate from a hospital nursing school, you might enroll in a college that accepts transfers and use it towards obtaining your ADN degree. In the meantime, you will be considered a Diploma RN.

You will need to locate a school that offers bridge programs that will allow you to build off previous learning experiences. If you are, a Diploma RN and wish to pursue your ADN, it would be wise to contact future schools to see what courses and credits will be able to transfer over.

Obtaining your Bachelor’s Degree

To become a nurse practitioner you will need to get post-secondary training. You will need to pursue a Bachelor Degree’s in Nursing (BSN).

When you hear people refer to post-secondary education, they are referring to attending a college or participating in a university beyond high school.

There is no way of getting around to not pursuing this degree because to be accepted in a Master’s Degree Nurse Practitioner program a BSN is required.

BSN programs will prepare you for the complex and challenging changes; you may encounter as a Nurse Practitioner. The BSN will help you deliver nursing care at a more advanced level. Many BSN school programs will emphasize disease prevention, health maintenance, and health promotion for patients.

Additionally, BSN RN school curricula emphasize critical thinking and consist of a large volume of Science courses.

Once you obtain your degree, you will be qualified and prepared to take the NCLEX-RN exam to further your career as an RN.

Getting your BSN is what is known as your undergraduate degree. Pursuing your BSN will offer you several benefits, such as more employment opportunities, higher pay with the ability to provide high-quality patient care.

There are several ways you can obtain your bachelor’s degree. Getting your BSN degree route will be based upon if you have previous work experience as a registered nurse and if you have previous college credits that can transfer over.

It is best to speak with a school counselor and explain what your goals and needs are and together you can select which path is best for you.

With many financial aid programs being available, it is kind of a no-brainer to stop worrying about how you can pay for your BSN and get started!

The quicker you obtain your BSN; the quicker your degree can start paying for itself.

Why is degree so important and relevant towards you advancing your career as a Nurse Practitioner but also as a Registered Nurse?

Due to the many advances in health care that are always changing and evolving this in return creates a demand for nurses to be highly skilled. According to the U.S Bureau of Labor 2020 guide; predicts more employment opportunities will be created within the nursing field than any other field.

The BLS anticipates tremendous growth will happen over the next few decades. Not to mention many employers prefer to hire RNs that hold BSN.

It is best to take advantage of this trend as well as stay competitive within the job market.

Completing your BSN is now more convenient than ever and can be obtained in several ways!

You can pursue your BSN with a traditional 4-year University. Alternatively, if you have already received your Associate’s Degree and meet a university’s prerequisites, you can transfer your current credits to a university and complete your BSN.

Frequently these requirements vary, some colleges will require your grade point average to be 3.5 or higher and must have taken selected science and chemistry courses. This all depends on, and it is best to check with the school first.

Already have a Bachelor’s Degree in an unrelated discipline? Then you will need to enroll in a Second Degree Bachelor of Science Nursing program. This nursing program is for students that hold degrees in other fields and concentrations.

The accelerated degree path usually will take one year or less to complete; classes can be online allowing students more flexibility. Completion of this program will enable you to obtain your BSN.

Finally, there are LVN/LPN-BSN and RN-BSN bachelor degree nursing programs. This is a great program and will allow you more employment opportunities. The difference in pay between what an LVN earns and what a registered nurse that holds a BSN is about three times greater. This is dependent on where you live.

By enrolling as a registered nurse or licensed vocational nurse, you might be able to transfer your previous work experience into earned credits. To receive your BSN you may need to fulfill some additional prerequisites.

Attending a Master’s Degree program for Nurse Practitioners

This is where you will get your specialized training to become a Nurse Practitioner.

Typically this degree takes two years, however; some online master’s degrees can be completed in less time. Obtaining your Master’s Degree in Science that has a concentration for Nurse Practitioners (MSN-NP) will be prepared to work as a Nurse Practitioner once you graduate. The main goal of MSN-NP programs is to improve primary care for patient populations.

The MSN-NP program will allow you to gain the knowledge and skills to work collaboratively with other health care professionals in a vast number of settings. The MSN-NP program will address population issues; help you understand complex problems and how to find solutions.

The academic courses will cover in-depth pharmacology studies along with case-based research. This program is primary care enriched to help you manage all aspects of care for the patient. You will learn to see, “the bigger picture,” and how to treat the whole person more holistically.

You will learn to recognize solutions for disease prevention as well as how to educate populations to live healthier.

You will additionally become familiar with health care systems, how it works and how to improve health care patient quality. You will learn to lead teams to work in collaborative environments and how to manage the business aspects of your new career!

When selecting an (MSN to NP) program make sure you select one that is accredited. You will be required to complete 720 hours of clinical practice this will need to be supervised. This course typically runs year around and two years to complete.

Below are courses from UC Davis’s Nurse Practitioner Curriculum this is to give you a better idea of what you might expect while pursuing your (MSN-NP) Degree.

What Certifications and Licensing will I need to become a Nurse Practitioner?

You will need to pass the NCLEX-RN and become an RN

Nurse practitioners are RNs that hold Master’s Degrees. Therefore, you will need to make sure you obtain your Nursing License to become a Registered Nurse (RN). There are several pathways to becoming a registered nurse. However, all students must take and pass the NCEX-RN examination.

Finally, you will need to obtain your Nurse Practitioner Certification

Once you complete your schooling and earn the necessary degrees, you now become eligible to register and take the national certification to become a licensed Nurse Practitioner!

Currently, the two of the most recognized and respected certifying bodies for Nurse Practitioners to earn certification are the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP).

Both certifying boards can allow you to obtain specialty certifications in the patient population you most feel most comfortable starting with and remember you can always change your specialty certification field if you feel it is not for you.

Alternatively, even in the future obtain a second certification to broaden further your skills as well as qualify for more employment opportunities.

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible to get your NP certification you need your RN license. Next, you will need to obtain your MSN from an accredited NP nursing program.

Finally, you’ll need to make sure you have completed at least 500 supervised clinical hours. You should check with your state’s board of nursing eligibility requirements.

Critical Nurse Practitioner Career and Education Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to be a Nurse Practitioner?

Between 6 to 7 years. You will need a BSN, which can take up to 4 years, plus an MSN to NP that could take up to 2 years to complete. You will also need at least one year of experience working as a Registered Nurse.

Can a Nurse Practitioner Prescribe Medication?

A. This is what makes the Nurse Practitioners’ role unique. Unlike traditional Registered Nurses who cannot prescribe medication, the Nurse Practitioner can.

Depending on what state you may live in, obtaining a physician’s signature may be necessary. However, within some states, you can prescribe medications without needing any physician signatures.

Why become a Nurse Practitioner?

Well, there are many reasons. For one, becoming a Nurse Practitioner allows you the opportunity to blend your nursing skills with the practice of medicine. If you ever had a dream of treating patients from start to finish then this could be worth exploring. The room for opportunities for growth, independence, and financial freedom is abundant with this career.

Career Outlook

The United States Department of Labor predicts registered nurses will grow much faster than average. The employment outlook for Nurse Practitioners is exceptionally high. This is due to the value Nurse Practitioners provide reasonably priced yet high-quality care for patients and health care systems. One of the Nurse Practitioners’ greatest strengths is the preventive medical importance they teach to their patients.

The market is opening up at a quicker rate due to the Affordable Care Act making this a hot job market to pursue. As a Nurse Practitioner, you can expect to have a market advantage as many healthcare facilities are being evaluated and rated on how well they provide outcome patient care.

Institutions both vast and small are hiring Nurse Practitioners as they have recognized NPs provide the patient with both a satisfying and excellent experience. As new areas of care open up and need more primary care this will continue to be an active market for Nurse Practitioners to pursue.

Read also – How to Become a Registered Nurse (RN) Guide

Check out our other Nursing School Guides.