WHAT IS A NURSE PRACTITIONER?

Is an advanced practice nurse who has post-graduate education in nursing and are prepared with advanced education, knowledge, skills in nursing. They are trained to assist those patients who require their services and explain laboratory results to the patient, they are even allowed to diagnose a patient, prescribe medications and formulate treatment plans. Their training covers basic prevention of diseases and promotes health but they lack the expertise of diagnosing serious health conditions.

NURSE PRACTITIONER EDUCATION

NP's are one of the most educated in the nursing profession. Most of the time they are the ones who are responsible for primary patient care. They also have the authority to administer medicines and they often specialize in obstetrics and pediatrics area. Because of the thorough training required to become a nurse practitioner, It usually takes 6 to 8 years of study and training to become one. They must complete 4 years of Bachelor's of Science in Nursing, to begin with, and followed by 2 to 4 years for the NP degree. 

RESPONSIBILITIES OF NURSE PRACTITIONERS

  •  Nurse practitioners perform complete physical examination.
  •  Thy can also do diagnosis and formulate a treatment plan.
  •  They provide immunization
  •  They can also prescribe medication and therapies
  •  They also educate people who do not have proper knowledge regarding health care and do counseling.
  •  They manage people with high blood pressure, diabetes, and other chronic health illnesses.

WORK SETTING

  •  Hospitals
  •  Clinics
  •  Schools
  •  Own private practice
  •  Public health care
  •  doctor's office

THEY SERVE:

  •  Family
  •  Pediatrics
  •  Psychiatry
  •  Adult gynecology
  •  Women's health

STORIES ABOUT NP's

Some are saying that Nurse practitioners are not as capable as physicians in providing health care but they do because of their considerable medical education and training.  Another thing is that people think that nurse practitioners work for a doctor but they are not. They are capable of seeing patients. 

DIFFERENCE BETWEEN RN's AND NP's

They both provide health care for patients but their main difference is their education. RN's earned a bachelor's degree while NP's must have a Master of Science in Nursing degree. Another is that large numbers of RN's work in hospitals but NP's in private and community health clinics. But the biggest difference between the two is the level of independence. NP's can see patients and can refer to physicians if the case requires and they can diagnose and treat acute illnesses and prescribe medicines. While RN's need to pass a licensing exam but NP's must pass a certification exam.

BENEFITS OF NURSE PRACTITIONERS

  •  Nurse practitioners involve their patients in the decision making about the method of care of their illnesses.
  •  They improve the access to primary health care because they are fully allowed to act and do as physicians in some ways.
  •  They reduce pressure because they fill the shortness in numbers of the physicians.
  •  They provide high-quality care for those patients with diabetes and high blood pressure.

So now we already have an idea of what are the things that awaits those who want to be a nurse practitioner. It may seem a lot of work but it is worth the try for those who are willing to be in that field.