The health care industry offers a wide variety of job opportunities, allowing almost anyone to find their specialty. Furthermore, as consumer demands increase and the field of health becomes modernized, existing job roles are beginning to shift.
One example is the family nurse practitioner. With the number of physicians nationwide on the decline, FNPs are stepping into the vacancies they leave behind to provide comprehensive health care throughout their patients’ lives. Here, FNPs do work similar to that of a doctor, assessing patients, analyzing data, creating treatment plans and providing medication — all thanks to their advanced nursing education.
If you want to provide a high level of care, take advantage of an exciting job market and potentially increase your salary, consider becoming a nurse practitioner. Not only can this path help you become a skilled practitioner, but you may experience the same level of job satisfaction held by so many of your potential future peers.
Job satisfaction among nurse practitioners
U.S. News & World Report rated nurse practitioner the fourth best job in the country for 2018, giving it an overall score of 8.2 out of 10.
The two primary reasons for this high rank were anticipated demand (which earned 7.9 out of 10) and salary (earning 8 out of 10). The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates 64,200 new advanced practice registered nursing jobs will open from 2016 to 2026 — a growth rate of 36 percent. Additionally, U.S. News found that the top 50 percent of NPs earn six-figure salaries, with average pay equaling $100,910 per year.
Furthermore, according to the physician career resource PracticeMatch, a 2017 nationwide study of 1,090 participants (consisting of 532 nurse practitioners and 558 physician assistants) found 38 percent of NPs are “extremely satisfied” with their jobs. This aligns with the average level across all jobs as evidenced by the Society for Human Resource Management’s 2017 Employee Job Satisfaction and Engagement report. Most notable about the PracticeMatch survey are the low levels of dissatisfaction. When results from the two groups were combined, only 6 percent said they were dissatisfied. This is noteworthy when compared to a survey from the nonprofit organization Mental Health America, which found the majority of Americans are unhappy with the state of their workplace.
Essentially, nurse practitioners tend to be happier in their jobs than most other professionals. With a high salary and great job outlook, now may be the perfect time to consider becoming an NP.
Family nurse practitioner: A specialization that increases your opportunities
There are many advanced nursing opportunities available, one of which is family health. Becoming a family nurse practitioner can allow you to provide more comprehensive care for your patients. As an FNP, you’ll be qualified to treat people across their lifespan, from birth until death. This type of personalized attention provides better outcomes and aligns with increasing consumer expectations.
Earning a degree in this area can give you a more comprehensive view of the state of modern health care, allowing you to use that knowledge to better assist the individuals you work with. As Deloitte noted in 2018, consumer demand for easier, better service is driving change across the health care industry. Working as an FNP can help you meet these expectations, allowing you to monitor, diagnose and treat patients without going through the extended training of a physician.
Furthermore, becoming an FNP can open up new pathways in your career. You’re able to experience greater autonomy and have your choice of working environments, including but not limited to primary care hospitals, urgent care facilities, hospices, schools and private homes. You may even open your own clinic if you desire.
What you’ll learn in an FNP degree program
A Master of Science in Nursing tailored toward the role of a family nurse practitioner can provide the advanced training you need to become certified in this area. Through your studies, you can expand your knowledge of nursing and health care, which can start you on the path to a satisfactory and lucrative career.
Some of the themes and concepts you may learn in an FNP degree program include:
- Analysis and development of nursing theories, which can help you both in clinical and research settings.
- Evidenced-based practice, helping you evaluate and utilize proven care strategies.
- Advanced health assessment, which may help you better collect data (including medical histories), interpret symptoms and prescribe treatment.
- Health care for specific demographics such as women, children and aging populations.
If you want to build on your nursing background and become a leader in primary care, consider the Bradley University online Master of Science in Nursing — Family Nurse Practitioner program. Delivered completely over the internet, you can complete classes and coursework according to your schedule, earning a degree while still working your full-time job. The program allows you to complete your clinical requirements in your area and can prepare you for the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) certification exam.
Taught by leading nursing professionals, the online MSN-FNP program can help you build on your nursing skills and take command of your career. Contact Bradley University today to learn more about the online MSN-FNP program.