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Acnp Programs

Acute care services cater to the needs of critically and acutely ill patients and nurses are a vital part of this system. An acute care nurse practitioner addresses the treatment and rehabilitation needs of people with chronic diseases like heart failure, renal ailments, last stage cancers etc.

Featured Programs:

Kaplan University Online

  • RN to MS in Nursing

Educational and Licensing Requirements
In order to become an acute care nurse practitioner, it is necessary to complete an undergraduate degree in nursing (BSN Nursing). This program will typically cover courses in sciences like biology, chemistry, microbiology and anatomy. After the successful completion of this degree, students can then enroll themselves in a master's program with a specialization in acute care nursing. Some schools require the applicants to be registered nurses with some minimum clinical experience. They also mandate that applicants pass drug screening and background checks. Acute care nurse practitioner programs can be pursued online as well after ensuring that the program is accredited by National League for Nursing Accreditation Commission or the American Association of Colleges of Nursing's Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. Once the degree requirements are completed students can sit for the certification examination conducted by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) to work as an ACNP.

Program Overview
Acute care nurse practitioner programs employ a didactical learning approach with a combination of theoretical knowledge and clinical applications. The theoretical content contains courses on pharmacology, biostatistics, epidemiology, pathology and physiology. The clinical rotation and trainings enable students to work under the supervision of physicians and professional acute care nurses in the form of groups and teams. This will give them a holistic approach to patient care in real world situations. These clinical experiences are offered at renowned research institutions, healthcare facilities and community hospitals utilizing modern technology. This will enable the participants to apply the freshly acquired skills in specialty areas like cardiology, transplant, nephrology, oncology, neurosurgery, trauma, and general surgery. Separate training is imparted to deal with different target groups of patients like older adults, adults, adolescents and children.

Job Responsibilities
ACNPs work in collaboration with doctors by administering the treatment prescribed by physicians and surgeons. They need to have developed complex life support and decision making skills as well as the ability to work under challenging and stressful environment. This is perhaps the most crucial task of acute care nurse practitioners as they will be working in emergency rooms, surgical and medical intensive care units and trauma centers. They are responsible for performing physical assessment, diagnostic tests and interventional procedures. Handling and maintaining health records, and providing post operative and follow-up care are also included in their job descriptions.

Employment Outlook
Acute care nurse practitioners are likely to face an increased demand as well as lucrative salary boosts. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing has called for a semblance between licensure, educational requirements and job responsibilities which will mean that only those holding a degree in acute care nurse practitioner program with the relevant licensure will be able to with chronically ill patients. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts, the employment in this field to grow at 26% till 2020. The average annual salary of ACNPs is around $90,000 and they can opt to work in many available work environments. The particular location, industry sector and the number of years of clinical experience will consequently determine the salary that is offered to them.

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Q:What kinds of courses are contained in the online acute care nurse practitioner programs?

A:Acute care nurse practitioner programs employ an in depth and didactic learning approach to learning with a combination of theoretical knowledge and clinical applications. The theoretical content generally contains courses on pharmacology, bio statistics, epidemiology, pathology and physiology. Courses usually vary from program to program and from school to school.

Q:Can you please tell me about the growth rate and an acute care nurse practitioner salary?

A:According to O NET Online, the median wages for acute nurses in the year 2012 were $65,470 annually. As far as the employment outlook and projected growth rate is concerned, there is a projected growth of 20% to 28% from the years 2010 to 2020, which is faster than the average for all occupations, according to O NET Online.

Q:Can you tell me about the acute nurse practitioner scope of practice?

A:Acute nurse practitioner scope of practice defines the actions and procedures that are acceptable by law for acute nurse practitioners. The laws governing scope of practice are based on specific experience and educational qualifications. It is not just crucial for you to know your duties and responsibilities as a nurse, but also the scope of practice of the others, who are the part of your nursing team and are involved in providing healthcare services.

Q:What acute care nurse practioner programs generally offer to students?

A:Acute care nurse practioner programs have a didactical learning approach. They combine theoretical knowledge with clinical applications. Theoretical content is based on courses such as physiology, pathology, epidemiology, biostatistics, and pharmacology. Clinical rotations and trainings enable students to work under the supervision of physicians and professional acute nurses. This gives students a holistic approach to deal with patient care in real world situations.

Q:What on-the-job tasks do acute care nurse practitioners perform?

A:Acute care nurses are responsible for treating and taking care of patients suffering from chronic medical conditions. The job tasks will vary from patient to patient. Some simple on-the-job duties include: administering medication, filing progress and managing patient charts, conducting medical tests, helping patients prep for tests, and more. Take a look at our page for more detail.

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