I am thinking about going back to school to become a Nurse Practitioner after I get my BSN in Nursing, but I have a few questions. 1) Is being a Nurse Practitioner totally different from being an RN? 2) Can a Nurse practitioner work 3 twelve hour days, 4 days off like a RN can or do they work a completely different schedule? 3) If I don't like it can I go back to being an RN? I for sure want to be a Registered Nurse, but still kind of "I don't know-ish" about being a Nurse Practitioner. It's not that I can't handle being a Nurse Practitioner, I just want to know how different it is from an RN so that I'm ready for anything thrown my way.
Aug 18, '12
1.Nurse practitioners are registered nurses who pursue additional, more comprehensive education and clinical training. A nurse practitioner typically has authority to provide the following services: obtain medical histories and perform physical examinations; diagnose and treat health problems; order and interpret laboratory tests and x-rays; prescrib medications and other treatments; prenatal care; well-child care; immunizations and family planning services; gynecological examinations and pap smears; health promotion, illness prevention, patient education about health risks; and case management and coordination of services.
2. Nurse practitioners practice in a variety of settings, ranging from primary care practice offices to hospitals to long term care to specialty practices, so work schedule will depend on where you work. The NPs that work in my ICU work 3 to 4 12 hour shifts a week, but my friend who works in a primary care clinic works five 8-hour shifts a week.
3. You can always go back to being a RN. However, TraumaRus you are correct in saying “ you held to the standard of care of your highest licensure”. My co-worker work part time in my ICU as a bedside nurse and full time as an NP at another hospital’s ER. When she is working as an ICU nurse she can only do what a beside RN can do not a NP. She doesn’t have NP privilages at my hospital and cant prescirbe meds or treatments but she is held to the standard of care as a NP. If she knows a therapy or medication is wrongly prescribe for a patients conditions by the docs (where its reasonable to state that a RN without further education would not know the difference or the correct therapy) and she doesnt do anything about it, she can be held responsible, if something goes wrong, becuase she has a NP license even though she is working as a RN in my hospital.
Last edit by CPT_Charlios on Aug 18, '12
: Reason: typos