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8 Essential Tips to Survive Nurse Practitioner School.

March 13, 2023 by  
Filed under Business, Education, Opinion, Weekly Columns

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(ThySistas.com) Registered nurses who are looking to advance their careers can consider the prospects of becoming a nurse practitioner or an NP. It is an extension of responsibility over regular nursing duties and helps a person establish an individual practice or work for a clinic or hospital. 

Nurse practitioners are practically filling the gaps in the healthcare workforce requirements where there is a dearth of qualified doctors. They tend to a lot of patient care needs that can be managed without extensive procedures or a medical expert’s opinion. 

Anyone who wants to prepare for courses for nurse practitioner will benefit from the overall career prospects that an NP qualification garners. An NP focuses on managing a patient’s health problems through treatment of the illness and injuries. They also assist in injury and disease prevention. 

Survive Nurse Practitioner School.

As a nurse practitioner, one is qualified, licensed, and can work as an independent health care practitioner as per the American Association of Nurse Practitioners. The duties and responsibilities of a nurse practitioner are higher than registered nurses and sometimes overlap with medical doctors and physician assistants. 

How to become a nurse practitioner?

To be a nurse practitioner one needs to be a registered nurse who completes a master’s or doctoral program in nursing. Post these two steps one has to obtain a national certification in the chosen area of practice. 

As studies have pointed out the patients who visit nurse practitioners have stated that they have better listening skills that help them comprehend their condition better, one can consider this route for professional growth. 

Apart from career advancement, nurse practitioners enjoy commendable respect in medical research fields. With their varied experience in patient relationships in comparison to doctors, nurse practitioners will benefit from honorariums to speak at medical seminars or be a part of medical research programs that will involve their expertise. 

Here are a few tips that will help one look into nurse practitioner courses and prepare to be one:

  • Choose an appropriate program

A nurse has to complete a master’s or a doctoral program in nursing to be eligible to apply for nurse practitioner certifications. So depending on your current level of degree, you have to choose the appropriate program that fits you. For example, a few universities may not have ADN to MSN programs, while others may have a BSN to MSN only and no doctoral program. 

So if you are aiming higher, choose a college that can support all your needs under one roof. This will save time and effort during your program

  • Lighten-up

If leaving the job is not an option, then it is advisable to take either an online program or a part-time course that requires fewer hours in a week to complete the course. Talk to your HR to accommodate a suitable shift, so that you can complete your studies in time. 

  • Check the finances

A master’s or doctoral program involves paying for fees and study supplies. You have to either dip into savings or arrange for loans. Few corporate healthcare units support the education of the employees. Check for this option with human resources. 

  • Optimize resources

If you are a working nurse, chances are you have bills to pay and probably an entire household that depends on your income contribution. Unlike your first nursing program where you had just your expenses to take care of, a lot is going on this time. Hence, it is recommended to use your resources wisely. 

Buy only the supplies that you strictly require. For the rest, share or borrow from friends or use library resources. Think about all your money-saving hacks and using store points to buy stuff that you may need. Every cent counts, so stop wasting, recycle and upcycle and be as frugal as you can. 

  • Effective communication

Start communicating through all channels to stay in touch with the updates and also express your opinion. It helps to draw the attention of your instructors to ask them anything where you are stuck. They are experienced and can help you find your way but without communicating to them that you need help, they will not know that you have any issues. 

  • Get acquainted with the clinical site

Some nurse practitioner programs won’t help you find a clinical location. If you are aware that this is the case with your program, start getting ready early and reaching out to healthcare facilities so you won’t have to rush to complete all of your hours in a short period. 

You will be running against time as the slots for training for nurse practitioners are few and there are many applicants. So, start early so that you don’t have to spend more time commuting to reach your clinical site. 

  • Up your clinical experience

Remember you are not a novice nurse. You are here to learn to be a nurse practitioner and to know the basics of nursing and patient care. What you have to learn has to be different from what you already know to create the differentiator that is expected from your nurse practitioner program. This can be done only when you make the most of your clinical experience. Proactively ask questions and seek answers in understanding and deliver patient care better as a future nurse practitioner. 

  • Be diligent

Getting back to education after work experience is difficult for most. A few weeks into your master, you may feel overwhelmed and feel like giving up. This is the time you need to ask for support and even take it from every available option. Friends and family can pitch in their roles in taking care of anyone dependent on you for care or attention like children or pets. Consider professional places like daycare centers and support groups to help you manage your time better.

Conclusion:

A nurse practitioner has better scope than a regular registered nurse in terms of employability. They can even open their practice and look into patients for general clinical cases like flu, and regular injuries, and offer the best possible ways for wellness programs.

Staff Writer; Paula Stewart


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