Tips for Becoming a Nurse Practitioner

One of the many benefits of a career in nursing is the ability to advance within the profession. One way to do this is to obtain a Master’s degree in nursing and become an advanced practice registered nurse (APRN). One type of APRN is a nurse practitioner (NP), a clinician who blends clinical expertise in diagnosing and treating health conditions with an added emphasis on disease prevention and health management.

A Career as a Nurse Practitioner

NPs have a comprehensive perspective on health care and practice in many different medical settings. They are able to diagnose and treat illnesses, prescribe medications, and order and interpret medical tests. 

With 89% of NPs prepared in primary care, they constitute a vital component of the primary care workforce, ensuring high-quality and patient-centered health care is available to a broad range of consumers. In fact, NPs make up the most rapidly growing component of the primary care workforce. 

Tips for Becoming a Nurse Practitioner 

  1. Become a Registered Nurse – You must earn an RN license to start an NP program. You can either achieve an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) or Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)

  2. Build Experience as a NurseIt’s important for a potential nurse practitioner to gain experience as a registered nurse and some programs require at least a year of prior nursing experience.

  3. Earn an Advanced Degree – You need to complete a minimum of a master’s degree to qualify as a nurse practitioner. Typically, you can complete the Masters of Science in Nursing degree in 2 years, pursuing a particular specialty or as a generalist degree.

  4. Earn CertificationAfter you graduate, you will need to be certified by sitting for national board examinations. Every nurse practitioner must pick a specialty. Your specialty dictates the type of certification exam you need to take. Certification also typically includes the requirement of at least 500 supervised clinical hours.

  5. Obtain State Licensure – After passing the exam, you must turn in your results and transcripts to your state to obtain a nurse practitioner license. In Ohio, an NP will need a standard care arrangement with a collaborating physician.

Through education, communication, and collaboration, OAAPN is actively advancing the health and well-being of patients as well as its profession in Ohio. There is strength in our numbers; authority in our voice; and influence in our actions. Contact us today to learn more about membership in OAAPN.