A family nurse practitioner (FNP) is an RN that has completed post-graduate training and earned either their MSN or DNP degree along with board certification in the field if FNP.
Family nurse practitioners are health promoters and are responsible for educating their patients about disease prevention as well as diagnosing and treating patients dealing with a number of illnesses and/or injuries from minor to acute/chronic medical conditions.
Some of the duties a family nurse practitioner may perform include diagnosing and treating a patients medical condition, prescribing medication, performing x-rays, doing medical research, assigning rehabilitation programs, performing screenings and researching the latest medical practices.
Because of the extensive training FNP’s acquire over the course of their education they are also able to open their own clinics and act on behalf of their patients as a primary health care provider.
What do family nurse practitioners do?
Family nurse practitioners are responsible for educating patients about good health practices and promoting positive health.
FNP’s may treat patients of all ages within a family setting and will diagnose and treat patients mental and/or physical ailments and/or illnesses, review their medical history, write prescriptions, perform x-ray exams, provide physical exams and prescribe physical treatment plans among other medical related tasks.
Where do family nurse practitioners work?
Family nurse practitioners may work in a number of different health care settings such as community clinics, doctor/practitioner offices, school health departments, health care agencies, hospitals and government agencies.
How much do family nurse practitioners make?
The average reported income for family nurse practitioners in the U.S. is around $95,000 a year. FNP’s that work in highly populated states such as New York, N.Y. may make a salary of between $60,000 – $180,000 per year, while FNP’s that work in Wyoming may make an average annual salary of $45,000 – $135,000 or more per year.
While family nurse practitioners that work in highly populated states may tend to make more they also generally have a higher cost of living which may have a significant effect on how much money they actually take home after expenses.
Please keep in mind that these are just estimates and may not include bonuses, incentives and overtime.
How do I become a family nurse practitioner?
The path to becoming a family nurse practitioners begins by earning your BSN and gaining experience in the registered nursing field.
Once you’ve begun working as a registered nurse its important to gear your training towards family care since most MSN/DNP programs look for experienced RN’s.
Your best option is to contact a school offering an MSN/DNP program and ask what types of training they look for when deciding whether or not to accept an RN into their program.
Once you’ve acquired the necessary education you can then apply for the FNP program.
The family nurse practitioner masters program is a 1 1/2 – 3 year program that focuses on providing medical care to a wide range of individuals within a family setting.
Most programs also require students to gain field experience and work for several hundred hours under the supervision of an accredited FNP before they can earn their degree and begin practicing as a family nurse practitioner.
Note: Due to the ever-increasing education standards nurse practitioners face it is possible that by 2015 all nurse practitioner programs will require potential NP’s to acquire their doctor of nursing practice (DNP) in order to begin working as a nurse practitioner.