The internal motivation to help people live better lives and impact this world can lead you towards a healthcare career. Reasonably enough, the healthcare industry is putting out more than 400,000 jobs every year. Out of all these jobs, one of the top-ranked jobs is that of a family nurse practitioner. It currently stands at number 5 best jobs according to the World report. Like almost every healthcare career, this job is rewarding and profitable. So if you are looking for a high salary along with job satisfaction, then the role of FNP is perfect for you. However, it is natural to have questions about this job before you make your choice. Some commonly asked questions about this job are:
- What is a Family Nurse Practitioner?
A specialized nurse who receives training in the clinical and educational practice about primary family care is known as a family nurse practitioner. Like a family physician, the role of FNP includes working with patients who belong to different ages and diagnosing their illnesses. An FNP is also responsible for treating these illnesses and recommending medicines according to their state. This job aims to help families maintain a healthy life.
Different laws affect the practice of an FNP. Different states require an FNP to work under a physician’s supervision. In other states, FNPs are allowed to work with their patients independently.
- How much do family nurse practitioners make?
To become an FNP, a person needs a minimum degree of Masters of Science in Nursing (MSN). With this degree, the average MSN FNP salary, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is $111,500 in 2021. It is about $38,000 more than the average salary of a registered nurse.
- What is the job outlook for family nurse practitioners?
Currently, the world faces a shortage of primary healthcare workers. For this reason, jobs like that of a family nurse practitioner are high in demand. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are an estimated more than 110,700 job openings for nurse practitioners. It promises a secure future if you choose to pursue this career with a growth rate of employment that goes up to 52%.
- What are the work hours like for family nurse practitioners?
The working hours of a nurse practitioner depend upon their working environment. A family nurse practitioner who works in a private setting does an average of 9-5 shifts. The workdays span from Monday to Friday. But the FNPs who work in emergency care service units or retail may have to work longer shifts. Urgent care centers can demand emergency shifts and non-traditional working hours. FNPs also have the choice to work in educational institutes. Their working hours span from 8-4 or 7-3 according to the school timings.
- What are the qualities of a family nurse practitioner?
Working in the healthcare sector demands specific skills and vital attributes that contribute to this job. Apart from the skills, you learn throughout your educational and training period, soft skills learned in private settings help an FNP thrive. So some skills that an FNP must have are:
- Mental endurance
- Physical endurance
- Communication skills
- Decision-making skills
All these traits contribute to an FNP’s practice and make them an exemplary nurse practitioner.
- What are the roles and responsibilities of a family nurse practitioner?
Similar to primary care physicians, family nurse practitioners have to take on essential responsibilities. Their primary responsibilities include diagnosing their patient, treatment procedures, health education of the patient and caretaker, and disease management. But these responsibilities differ from state to state. Generally, FNPs have the following obligations:
- Help in the management of chronic health diseases
- Treat minor illnesses and injuries
- Provide healthcare services to patients from diverse background
- Carry out physical assessments and health examinations of their patients
- Educate their patients about their illness, health, disease management, and lifestyle
- Order for diagnostic tests and interpret them
- Prescribe medications according to illnesses
Family nurse practitioners are not limited to one place, gender, or community. They have to work with diverse patients and practice in different parts of the country. Most of the time, family nurse practitioners are in high demand in rural areas.
- How to become a family nurse practitioner?
To become a family nurse practitioner, you have to:
- Have a bachelor’s degree of Science in Nursing
- Have a Master’s degree of Science in Nursing along with FNP as a specialization
- Get a license to become a registered nurse
- Obtain a certificate after passing ANCC or the AANP exams
Once you follow all these steps, you will need to continue educational requirements for your career advancement. Apart from that, you have to practice in the clinical hours to keep your license.
Becoming a family nursing practitioner takes a lot of hard work and determination. But if you want excellent job satisfaction and a clear career perspective, this hard work doesn’t look bad. Especially if you get to spend your life helping other people, you will find many ways to advance your career and knowledge as long as you work in this field. But it won’t always be a piece of cake because working in a healthcare setting is stressful.