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CNM vs WHNP

Posted

I have decided to return to school to get my advanced practice degree. I have a women's health & obstetric background. I have applied to WHNP programs and FNP programs for Fall 2015. However, lately I've been contemplating CNM. Anyone else on the fence?

mommy2anangel

Has 20 years experience.

Why not get both? I know Frontier and Georgetown both offer dual degrees. I plan on applying to Frontier for CNM and taking the extra 600 hours of clinical for my WHNP.

@ mommy2anangel,BSN,RN-I would more consider a CNM/FNP dual program if anything, but thanks for the heads up. This gave me an idea.

zmansc, ASN, RN

Specializes in Emergency.

FNU also has a CNM/FNP dual option.

@zmansc,RN-I know, but I graduated nursing school in 2001 and with Frontier you need to have taken statistics within the past year. I don't really want to have to go back and take a class I took already...

queenanneslace, ADN, MSN, APRN, CNM

Specializes in Nurse-Midwife.

@zmansc,RN-I know, but I graduated nursing school in 2001 and with Frontier you need to have taken statistics within the past year. I don't really want to have to go back and take a class I took already...

There will be a lot of material and coursework that you will cover multiple times whenever you go back to school. FNU requires a statistics course within the last 10 years. I also had to re-take a statistics course before I applied. It seemed redundant, but it hindsight, it was a good refresher. Don't let a prerequisite deter you from what you want to do!

@queenanneslace,RN- Did you take the statistics course through Frontier or at your local college?

I've also thought about the options of WHNP with a post master's certificate in FNP or vice versa depending on which program accepts me...any thoughts anyone?

queenanneslace, ADN, MSN, APRN, CNM

Specializes in Nurse-Midwife.

I took Stats as part of my undergraduate degree. I then re-took stats at a local community college prior to applying to FNU.

I would recommend not doing FNU's stats course - the tuition is more expensive than many other options offered through local universities or community colleges. Both times I took statistics, it was excellent. I'm glad I have that foundation.

I really, REALLY, didn't want to re-take stats. I dragged my feet and whined about it. And it wasn't because I didn't like stats - it felt weird to have to remediate a course I'd previously taken and done well in!

queenanneslace, ADN, MSN, APRN, CNM

Specializes in Nurse-Midwife.

At Frontier, the WHNP is a standalone degree or it can be added on to the CNEP program after graduation. It is not technically a dual-degree - by completing the CNEP portion, and MSN, the academic requirements are fulfilled for WHNP. There are additional clinical hours to complete for the WHNP.

It is harder to do it the other way around - to complete a WHNP and then go to CNM- there are more academic and clinical requirements. So if individuals are interested in doing both, it is recommended to do the CNEP and post-masters certificate/completion in women's health.

zmansc, ASN, RN

Specializes in Emergency.

At Frontier, the WHNP is a standalone degree or it can be added on to the CNEP program after graduation. It is not technically a dual-degree - by completing the CNEP portion, and MSN, the academic requirements are fulfilled for WHNP. There are additional clinical hours to complete for the WHNP.

It is harder to do it the other way around - to complete a WHNP and then go to CNM- there are more academic and clinical requirements. So if individuals are interested in doing both, it is recommended to do the CNEP and post-masters certificate/completion in women's health.

Asking because it's easier than looking up the specifics, what does a dual WHNP/CNM gain you in practice?

I understand what a dual FNP/CNM gains the provider in scope of practice, and that is the combination I've seen most often in fellow students in my classes at FNU, but I don't know enough of what a WHNP can do to know what is in their scope but not in the CNMs scope.

queenanneslace, ADN, MSN, APRN, CNM

Specializes in Nurse-Midwife.

Asking because it's easier than looking up the specifics, what does a dual WHNP/CNM gain you in practice?

Well, I'm not an NP or CNM, but I'll answer this question the way I understand it. CNMs have a broader scope of practice in that they attend births and provide intrapartum care. Some WHNPs provide prenatal care - some do not. The benefit of having the WHNP in addition to the CNM is being allowed to be licensed and to practice as a WHNP if you are a CNM and you are not currently providing intrapartum care.

Many states have additional requirements for licensing CNMs - malpractice insurance, written collaborative agreements with physicians. The additional WHNP allows the CNM to provide gyn and well woman care without having to fulfill the additional and often expensive requirements for CNMs - who are presumed to be providing intrapartum care. The CNM would be practicing under the WHNP license, not the CNM license.

Maybe I have it all wrong... but that is how I understand it.

I also think it would be useful to have additional training in well-woman and gynecological care - I know that many CNMs felt this was an area where they were not-as-well-prepared when they graduated.

NicoletteAmber

Has 2 years experience.

Have you found any additional information about that? I was told to apply to frontier as well. I'm just not sure I would want to do a labor and delivery job. I'm more interested in working for the VA Women's Health Clinic or a Women's Clinic in general mostly focusing on education and seeing patients. Any insight though is wonderful I hadn't thought about the difference in education and practice requirements for CNM.

zmansc, ASN, RN

Specializes in Emergency.

Have you found any additional information about that? I was told to apply to frontier as well. I'm just not sure I would want to do a labor and delivery job. I'm more interested in working for the VA Women's Health Clinic or a Women's Clinic in general mostly focusing on education and seeing patients. Any insight though is wonderful I hadn't thought about the difference in education and practice requirements for CNM.

I'm not sure who your question is targeted towards. I have not found any additional information as it was merely a curiosity and I don't feel like reading my state's scope of practice for specialties I don't plan on getting. From my understanding the scope of practice for WHNP & CNM have high overlap, with CNM being more broad (delivery), but that's at a very high level, I'm not sure how each state sees it in detail, not to mention how the insurance companies and facilities in my area would see it. We don't have any WHNPs here, we have two CNM/FNP, as this combination allows them to take care of a much broader spectrum of patients. In fact, I would say the FNPs outnumber the WHNP in my cohort by about 20:1. I think people tend to be going either FNP or CNM, but I'm sure there are more accurate census numbers somewhere for the different specialties.

Since you have very specific interests (VA Women's Health Clinic or Women's Clinics in general), I would suggest talking to practitioners in those clinics and asking which path they believe would be most helpful and what would be the practical differences in your practice between a WHNP, CNM, & WHNP/CNM.