The world of nursing is changing at an astounding rate, creating new careers, specializations and ultimately better healthcare choices for the community at large. Issues concerning the nursing shortage and a lack of qualified nurses able to provide medical care have been reduced, but not eliminated, and many states have increased the incentives available to help recruit, train and retain nurses. For nurses or nursing school students looking for a highly-skilled career path in nursing, one of the best ways to enter into those positions is through the fulfillment of a Doctorate of Nursing Practice program.
With many nurses spending countless hours in campus-based or online nursing school programs, the ability for a nurse to increase education and expand career possibilities throughout the nurse’s tenure has also increased. With more education and experience behind a nurse, the advanced practice and higher-skilled positions in nursing have begun to shift, and the initial training and education of these nurses is helping to put more skilled healthcare workers in hospitals, clinics and medical facilities. Nurse Practitioners, Clinical Nurse Leaders and other Advanced Practice Nurses are among these nursing positions, each requiring a minimum of a Master of Science in Nursing degree, if not more.
Since many of these nurses have both the time and experience needed to practice nursing and medicine in a similar capacity as a general physician, obstetrician or anesthesiologist, for example, programs that focus on a doctorate-level education in a clinical, not research-based methodology were developed. These Doctorate of Nursing Practice programs are a culmination of the time spent in the classroom and in a nursing environment that serves to give nurses the ability to practice medicine, while still maintaining a hands-on approach to patient care. It is this specialized level of education that is leading the way for nurses to gain equal ground within the medical community.
As a currently enrolled student nurse, or a new high school graduate considering the options within local colleges, universities or online nursing programs, a Doctorate of Nursing Practice degree can provide challenge and an understanding of the medical and personal sides of medicine, giving a nurse a well-rounded ability to provide optimal patient care throughout the community.