While choosing a career, it is imperative that we know the exact job. This is especially true for the medical field, since the job descriptions of so many professions in this field are similar. A Nurse Practitioner is also known as an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN). This means that they can perform a range of specialized activities that a nurse can’t. NPs have different work depending on the field they specialize on. Let us look at the general job duties and that of their specializations.
Table Of Contents:
- Nurse Practitioner Salary
- Nurse Practitioner Employment Outlook
- How To Become A Nurse Practitioner
- Nurse Practitioner Job Description
How Much Does A Nurse Practitioner Make In Birmingham?
The average salary for a nurse practitioner is around $90,000. The NP receives higher salary than RNs, which is approximately $65,000. This is because the training of NPs are more extensive, allowing them to earn a medical practitioner title.
Wherever there is a growing need of NPs, they will be paid more. For example, Hawaii is the highest paying state with an average salary of $115,000 a year. This is about 30% percent more than the national average. While Delaware offers something around $67,000.
Years of Experience
Salary increase in this field is rare even for those who have extensive experience. A 10-15% increase in the salary may be given to those who have been working in the field for more than 20 years.
An increase of salary may be given if you have more expertise in some fields. Acute care and Emergency room skills will be something that can increase your average salary to up to $99,000. Those who have family care skills can earn up to $92,000. Those who earn somewhere in between are mostly geriatrics and internal medicine practitioners.
Increase in Position
Salary raise in the field could only be achieved when you get a promotion or when you earn a specialization. Achieving this may require you to do the following. An option is to earn $150,000 annually by becoming a Nurse Practitioner Anesthetist. You could also try to become an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner to earn a bit more than a normal NP. Becoming a Family, Pediatric NP, Psychiatrist NP, or an Adult NP are the top options, as well. You could also increase your salary with other specializations after doing the procedures. In order to achieve these things, you will need to undergo a number of training sessions and acquire additional certification.
An NP is entitled to numerous benefits. Some of the few are retirement plans, paid vacations, and health insurance. They are often reimbursed for any further studies that they may wish to undertake to improve themselves. Learning skills is a big matter, which is why they are given money and registration fees to participate in conferences that improve their abilities.
Since primary medical personnel is short in numbers, the demand for mid-level medical care professionals may increase. Therefore, an increase in Nurse Practitioners salary is more likely to happen in time. As an NP you are also given more time and freedom to choose which cases to work on.
Nurse Practitioner Birmingham Employment Outlook
In 2014, the United States of America provided 170,000 jobs to nurse practitioners. According to BLS, the industry is expected to grow by 31% over the next decade. In other words, that period will have roughly 57,000 new jobs. The main reason for this is the shortage of medical workers. The need for doctors and physicians cannot be catered by the number of medical professionals. This means that PAs and NPs will continue to be needed for a long time. It is estimated that the jobs for Family, Pediatric, Gastroenterology, and Hospitalist NPs will rise by about 11% whereas that of neonatal NPs will rise about 34%. Compared to other jobs, this increase in growth is faster.
Another reason for the increasing demand of nurses is because they take a patient-centered approach rather than a disease-centered one. It is the reason why NPs are preferred over PAs.
There is a growing demand for medical care in rural areas. Most of these areas are not suitable for new buildings, which means that the people could only consult with NPs. These medical practitioners may ask help from other physicians to cater to the patients in the area. The biggest employers of NPs are Office of Physicians, Outpatient Care Centers, and General Hospitals.
The need for specialized health care is also increasing. Nurse practitioners are usually specialized in some or the other field like pediatrics, gerontology, acute care and many other things. The diagnosis of the illness is clearer and faster when the disease is specialized by the practitioner.
Nurses are also in demand in the field of education. Teachers of nurses and other medical professionals are needed due to the lack of people honing the skills of the future medical practitioners. So, if a nurse practitioner gets a Ph.D. he or she would be authorized to teach as an academic. Some people resort to teaching after a long period of service. NPs who do not have the strength to carry on the usual work may opt for this.
Financially speaking, the future for nurse practitioners is quite bright too. Because of the need for nurse practitioners, a 19% salary raise in 2020 may be given. A salary of $85,000 may be earned by those who are in teaching. If you have been exposed to many medical specialization, your salary could increase to $175,000 within a year. The specialization of a nurse determines the amount of salary he or she earns. A nurse anesthetist earns about $150,000 and this can go up to $235,000.
The state you live in has a say on the job standpoint and salary of each career. For more statistics and data on the job outlook of NPs, you can visit Bureau of Labor Statistics. Obviously, it is a career that is challenging and highly accredited, as well.
How To Become A Nurse Practioner In Birmingham
How to Be A Registered Nurse
The first step is to become a registered nurse. In order to be one, get your bachelor’s or an associate’s degree from an accredited school. Another way is earning a diploma. Although, some papers may not be useful because medical experience weighs more. This experience is provided by an associate’s degree or a bachelor’s degree. Taking and passing the standardized national exam for RNs is your next step so you can work officially. Becoming a Licensed Practical Nurse first is another way to achieve your goals.
Earning Bachelor’s Degree
It is also recommended that one completes his/her Bachelor’s Degree. This is ideal for applicants for a diploma or an associate’s degree. A Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) is required. Besides the comprehensive learning of medical procedures, there is also application during internship clinic rounds. One’s experience in the field contributes a lot to the career of a medical professional. You may already have a bachelor’s degree while you were pursuing a career as Registered Nurse. Such cases can be addressed through the bride programs offered by RN-BSN. The program has different time schedules. If you have a part-time work, the period of the study may take longer. There are also bridge courses from LPN-BSN.
Years of Practice
The medical field treats experience as a great factor. Getting a master’s degree after a bachelor’s degree might be the most efficient way of becoming an NP. Some nurses who have been working for a long time feel that this process is somehow lacking when it comes to real life applications. Thus, they recommend you go through some training before applying for a graduate degree since some of the NP training programs also require you to have some prior experience. This training teaches you how to work with a team of medical professionals, how to work efficiently, how to tend to different patients and how to treat a variety of infections.
Earning a Master’s Degree
A requisite of becoming a Nurse Practitioner is one’s Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree. RNs having diploma or an associate’s degree are usually accepted in most programs. A bachelor’s degree is needed to enroll in other programs. Either way, the master’s degree includes spending time in both the classroom and the clinic. While studying to earn the NP title, RNs mostly need to undergo long hours of training. You might also try to get a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree as an alternative.
Earning A Ph.D. Title
After earning a master’s degree, one has freedom to choose a specialization for his/her Ph.D. This will improve your credibility as a medical professional and improve your chances to earn a bit more. Specialization in family care, gerontology or health systems are good options.
State License and Certification
It is mandatory for an aspiring NP to get licensed by the state. Requirements for licensing may vary in every state. They publish a list of accepted programs and bachelor’s degree. Passing the state licensure exam, RN license, and a master’s degree are the requirements in becoming a nurse practitioner. Licensure exams are in line with your specialization. You can pass your application and requirements in any establishments under the American Nurses Association such as the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board.
To revise, you first need to get an associate’s degree or a diploma to become a registered nurse. Then you must obtain a bachelor’s degree after which you move on to gain some experience. Then, you choose the best specialization and earn your license after finishing your master’s degree.
What Does A Birmingham Nurse Practioner Do?
Works in general
A nurse practitioner usually works under the supervision of a physician or someone of the same level. They are authorized to diagnose and treat patients, too. Apart from this, they could also send the patient for tests and other medical procedures. They interpret these results and consult with the patient. Sometimes, they are also allowed to assist a physician in surgery whether as the surgeon or an anesthetist. Some high-risk cases are also handled by them.
A more patient-centered treatment approach is done by nurse practitioners. This means that they focus more on the patients’ needs and wants while treating them. They value prevention over treatment, which is why they advise their patients to start taking precautions. Thus, a huge role of NPs is to consult patients on how to prevent injuries and illnesses.
Before the licensure exam, a nurse practitioner is generally required to complete a specialization program. There are specific duties by NPs on the field, which is why they need this. Let us look at some of the popular choices and their job duties.
NPs on this field consult with whole families. They can treat people of all ages and discuss ways to prevent diseases with the family. They also provide direct care to the family in collaboration with a physician.
Working as Psychiatric NP
One of the professionals who can handle patients with mental problems is the psychiatric nurse practitioners. They can practice as therapists and sometimes prescribe appropriate medicine. However, they are not allowed to perform psychological testing. In this case, they can work with a professional psychologist to come up with a treatment program base on the results.
NPs Practicing Pediatrics
Pediatric NPs can handle newborn babies up to 18-year old patients. Under this specialty is the neonatal NP. People you see inside Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICUs) caring for newborn babies work in this field. Another work of pediatric NPs is helping kids have a smooth journey through puberty. Immunizations are also part of their work.
NPs in Gerontology
A gerontology nurse practitioner specializes in the healthcare of old people. They educate them about disease prevention and manage any illnesses they might have. Old people are more prone to different diseases. These healthcare experts will help reduce the risks of other diseases. In an effort to prolong the life of their patients, they provide them fitness plans.
These are just some of the specializations of a nurse practitioner. There are more fields that NP would want to pursue. The earnings may be different for each specialization. The Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) is a specialization that lets one earn one of the highest salaries. After learning these work descriptions for your future career, you may now be able to choose the ideal path for you.