Phasing out of Master's for NPs???

  1. I am in Florida and was wondering if anyone else has heard about this. I was thinking of going back to school with a RN-to-MSN program and becoming a NP. I was told there is no more RN to MSN program, and that BSN's will be able to obtain a Doctorate in Nursing Practice degree to become a Nurse Practitioner.

    What is your take on this? Is this happening all over the country? What do you think it will mean for the nursing profession?
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   elkpark
    There are several recent threads here on this topic that you could search and review. All that has happened so far is that the AACN has issued a position paper (which is not binding in any way, just offering up the AACN's opinion) and there is a lot of chatter about the subject.

    My own opinion is that this will most likely play out like the BSN-as-entry-to-practice issue -- we've been debating that for ~40 years, and it ain't happened yet. I predict a similar trajectory for the clinical-doctorate-as-entry-into-advanced-practice proposal.

    Of course, if you want to get a clinical doctorate instead of an MSN for preparation for an advanced practice role, you certainly have the option of doing that (heaven knows, the programs are springing up like mushrooms after a spring rain these days ...) But I don't think you have to worry about the demise of the MSN anytime soon.
    Last edit by elkpark on Nov 30, '05
  4. by   Ms. M
    Hi Everyone,

    What I read was not that MSN would be phased out but that the new advanced practice standard would be the doctorate in nursing. I don't think thats a very good ideas.

    Ms. M.
  5. by   sirI
    Hello, BeachNurse,

    I am fairly certain the MSN will not be phased out at all. That makes no sense at all for the art of nursing.

    There is a push for the DNP to be standard for NP's by 2015 (I believe I am correct on that year). Here are a couple links pro and con:


    http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/514543?src=mp pro

    http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/514544?src=mp con
  6. by   BeachNurse
    Thanks for the info..I actually did some more checking around. I want to attend University of Florida and THEY are phasing out their Master's prepared NP program. So if you want to do NP you have to do the DNP program. I am strongly considering it and I think it's a step UP for nurses..it has to be. University of Florida has a much better nursing school reputation than my alternatives, so I am planning to go for it..
  7. by   Ex130Load
    I've read the National Council of Nursing or some other body is advocating NPs become PhDs so that they can more effectively integrate with other healthcare providers. Those aren't the exact words, but pretty close. That rationale is also part of why many pharm schools are now PhD level. Had also read that the NP PhD conversion date was supposed to start 2010 or so.
  8. by   traumaRUs
    I'm doing a post-MSN clinical nurse specialist (APN) and my school is staring a DNP next year. However, they will still offer the MSN. While I think a DNP is nice, what (in reality) does it get you? There is still little respect from the MD's. Personally, I don't want to be a doctor or I would do the MD/DO route.
  9. by   BeachNurse
    Quote from Ex130Load
    I've read the National Council of Nursing or some other body is advocating NPs become PhDs so that they can more effectively integrate with other healthcare providers. Those aren't the exact words, but pretty close. That rationale is also part of why many pharm schools are now PhD level. Had also read that the NP PhD conversion date was supposed to start 2010 or so.
    That is what I have read also. My sister is a PharmD and there are great similarities between the two. I think they have phased out Registered Pharmacists...PharmD's definately have a lot of respect and are integrated strongly with other healthcare providers.
  10. by   Ex130Load
    Beach Nurse,

    The topic of transitioning to NP PhDs came up during my senior year. Several classmates considering follow-ons to NPs commented that if they were gonna become NPs, they were gonna do it before PhDs became the norm. Like me, they wondered how many folks would go to the extra hassle and time for the advanced degree and questionable financial return. RNs of whatever degree are in short supply. I can't see mandating an advanced degree for the title will be an attractant to NPing. I also think it will add another dimension to the education required to be nurse conundrum/controversy--certificate, AA, or BSN. If schools universally phase out masters level NPs, I feel there won't be any significant discussion or backlash until or if the number of practicing NPs drops. Wiser heads in the RN controversy with true "big picture perspective" know that if BSN RNs are mandated, the RN supply will only further decrease. With all the money required of schools to run a program (especially properly credentialed faculty), I find it hard to believe schools would have both masters and PhD NP programs except for closing out masters programs as my university system when it transitioned over to pharm PhDs from baccalaureates.

    It'll be interesting.
  11. by   BeachNurse
    Quote from Ex130Load
    Beach Nurse,

    The topic of transitioning to NP PhDs came up during my senior year. Several classmates considering follow-ons to NPs commented that if they were gonna become NPs, they were gonna do it before PhDs became the norm. Like me, they wondered how many folks would go to the extra hassle and time for the advanced degree and questionable financial return. RNs of whatever degree are in short supply. I can't see mandating an advanced degree for the title will be an attractant to NPing. I also think it will add another dimension to the education required to be nurse conundrum/controversy--certificate, AA, or BSN. If schools universally phase out masters level NPs, I feel there won't be any significant discussion or backlash until or if the number of practicing NPs drops. Wiser heads in the RN controversy with true "big picture perspective" know that if BSN RNs are mandated, the RN supply will only further decrease. With all the money required of schools to run a program (especially properly credentialed faculty), I find it hard to believe schools would have both masters and PhD NP programs except for closing out masters programs as my university system when it transitioned over to pharm PhDs from baccalaureates.

    It'll be interesting.
    The first thing I asked the UF program director was if they anticipated whether NP salaries would go up with the DNP degree. She took great offense to the question and stated that she was not knowledgeable on the subject, that their concern was bringing a higher level of professionalism and getting ready for the future of NP practice. My concern was whether it would be worth my while financially (to pay for school) and get the Doctorate. After some thought, I decided that I would prefer to go for it, and that it might give me an edge later on. I have always wanted to get a Doctorate..this is my chance. I have to finish my BSN first, but after that she told me the DNP program would take me 3 years if I go part time. It doesn't seem like it's much longer than they told me it would take get the Master's.
  12. by   wtbcrna
    I would view the position statement from AACN that NPs should have their doctorate for entry into advanced practice about the same way that a BSN is needed for entry into nursing. They both sound nice on paper, but the reality of making them into fact is quite a bit different. The MSN for entry into advanced practice nursing is going to be here for a long time.

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