A male Nurse Practitioner: What are your thoughts? - page 2

I am debating on whether I should become a NP or a PA. I've been researching on both professions on the Internet and elsewhere all summer, and I look forward to finally being able to job shadow these... Read More

  1. by   SmoothJams
    …missed a few additional gems from this post…

    Quote from rxh027
    Schools would not be doing away with money-making MSN--NP programs, if there was not a reason!!

    Correct, but not because there is a mandate/requirement for the DNP. Because the DNP is not really a clinical degree, schools can tack on the necessary classes to an MSN program and charge WAY more tuition for essentially the same thing by repackaging an MSN as a DNP.

    Quote from rxh027
    Education--other: If one is already an RN with a BSN, it will be easier to get the MSN--NP, but with the DNP requirement, it will still take one an additional 4 years, in some advanced cases only 3 years, to complete the DNP, after the BSN. If one does not have any RN degree or license, it will be a lot easier to gain PA Master degree and go the PA route.

    This is also wrong because of the false underlying DNP mandate premise. There are still plenty of direct entry programs available for those who do not have a bachelor's degree in nursing. These programs only take 3 years but do have basic science prerequisite classes and can be very competitive. Also, there are some RN-MSN bridge programs available for Associates level RNs who want to become NPs. For example, University of Illinois Chicago has this option. Their program only requires 4 bridge classes for RNs before starting the 2 years of master’s specialty classes.
  2. by   indomie23
    Thank you for each and everyone's help.

    To answer your guys' questions, I am a freshman in college. I'm currently taking nursing prerequisite coursework at the local CC, and I am also working part time as a caregiver at an independent-living senior facility.

    Just a little about my job experience:
    It's simple job (companionship, assisting with daily tasks, MR's, simple shower assists here and there). I work my shift independently. I am realizing that, although I admire the friendships with these great individuals, it is kind of getting mundane to do basically the same task every Sunday night, possibly in part that, with all due respect, they are elderly people, that it's at night (3-10pm), and/or that I work independently, etc...? So am I wanting for a job experience that provides new experiences, or maybe time and experiences will tell.

    I have also never shadowed a professional yet, but hope to soon. I am considering on getting my CNA license sometime this year. I don't think research/policy are areas I want to get into. Then again, I am just starting. For me, teaching may be in consideration someday once I delve into what the nursing field is. Clinical work is what I am more interested in.

    Here's some more personal views and interests that may help one's advice for me:
    I want to be one that can help someone in a more deeper aspect of health, like medicine, and have more closer of relationships with my patients, and not have to go through the process of medical school. That is why I am thinking about going onto to becoming a NP. I notice that they have good autonomy, and can treat patients similarly to a medical doctor in more basic aspects, if i am not mistaken.

    I also have interest in surgery, travelling to third world countries to help those less fortunate, missionary work, the homeless, and just being the one that has the solution to many and common health problems. I am considering the area of Family NP, because it touches a greater range of the lifespan. I am guessing that if is a NP, and wants to get into more medical aspects, then they can take more schooling for that.

    I would greatly appreciate it if someone could give me advice based on what I've mentioned. Thank you!
  3. by   nikkimarthe
    indomie32 hi, I graduated as ACNP after being 5 years as an RN. I think it depends a lot on how you see yourself in a few years and where you want to work. All my training as an ACNP was in the ICU some I know are not ICU based but mine was. I cover the ICU as an ACNP and very independent. Pay is good. I have been debating ACNP and CRNA before I ever started. One thing I can say with ACNP or maybe all advanced practice nurses it's not as easy to find the right job for you. I like ICU but i am not keen to cover days and nights rotation. I struggled with that. I like being able to perform a lot of procedured like central lines, intubations and etc. You cannot also move to different places like obviously pediatric places. We have PAs in our place equally the same autonomy. It depends on your state and hospital policy. Didn't see difference in work between both. One thing i could say with pa their depth in medical knowledge was more that I did start reading more when i started and I still do on every new diagnosis. Anatomy too wasn't as great. There are also some Nps i have worked who couldn't handle the job and we had to let go and I feel bad as an NP for that one of the reasons there should be mandated in person exam if online is a necessity and more clinical hours and definitey the nurse experience should be at least 2 years.( that's just my opinion)

    I worked immediately in the ICU as a new grad NP. I'm very lucky had a very strong intensivist who trained me in clinicals and a very independent acnp. Main difference too with clinicals with acnp in some programs you can choose your own clinicals and some are not sufficient.

    Pa schools the good one at least have it set up already that i know off and also they had same didactic as medical students but no residency but more clinical hours than np.

    SO i guess bottom line it will vary. Are you a good nurse in your area? and do you want to stay in that area? three Work hard on your master's whatever you choose. I always thought when i was doing clinicals one day I will be managing patients on my own and hopefully with backup and I'd rather be asking a lot now and working really hard and be really good at it if you have strong ICU rns working with you they will make your life hell too if you don't know what you are doing

    Another thing I could also say independence is over rated to me at times esp when I have to cover 25 ICU beds.. I sure am happy my intensivist is around to bounce back things and split work.
  4. by   nikkimarthe
    and as for the male there were half male in my class doubt there will be an issue to that and a I have at least 3 male coworkers too 2 pa one np
  5. by   nikkimarthe
    sorry i think this post was meant for the original poster rx
  6. by   Annaiya
    From what you have written about what you are doing now and what your interests are for the future, I think nursing sounds like a great fit for you. I feel like nurses and nursing school puts a very strong focus on helping less fortunate people and treating all people equally. If you really enjoy developing the therapeutic relationships with your parents, you may be entirely satisfied as an RN. You have a lot of autonomy depending on the position you work in. I think it just depends on your perspective and how you view the role of the nurse. You do have to follow (generally) the orders written by the NP or the MD, but there is so much work that nurses do that isn't part of the orders and how you perform those nursing functions is completely up to the nurses. So, I think it sounds like you are on the right track by going to nursing school. Then once you are out working as a nurse you can find out more about what you like and where you want to go with your career. NP school might be what you want to do, but if not, you still have a career that is rewarding and where you can make a huge difference in people's lives. PA school is much more limiting in terms of career options.

    Since you're just a freshman now, my advice would be to explore all of the different types of jobs that RN do and work on figuring out what area you want to work in. Once you get there, then you can start exploring NP roles. NPs do function in similar or in some cases, identical roles to MDs. There are some great things about being an NP, but you give up some of the great things about being an RN. An NP is not just a nurse with more responsibility, but rather a completely different role from a nurse. Although NPs draw on their nursing experience and maintain the nursing perspective of care most of the job is completely different. So, I think it is important to learn what you enjoy doing the most and then decide if you'd be happier as an RN or an NP. Definitely doing some shadowing could help you figure some of that out, but really you don't understand nursing until you are one. There are so many subsets of nursing that it is impossible to understand all of nursing with just a few shadow days.
  7. by   MaleNPToBe
    Hey man, this is kind of a late to the party comment, but hopefully I can help you out a bit here... So I'm currently in my first year of NP school in an Entry-Level or ELMSN's program, meaning I had a undergrad in a non-nursing field. I was in your exact same position when trying to decide on doing this, PA vs NP... There is no one size fits all answer, but what did it for me was that the "holistic" nursing model approach to medicine and the overall autonomy that the NP designation affords. My program is a little over 3 years though, first year is accelerated to take NCLEX and get your RN license, then the last 2.5 years is all NP. Depending on what track you decide on, you can either do full-time or part-time, in which the later would allow you to work as an RN while finishing your NP degree. It's a pretty good way to go if you ask me, but the PA is still appealing and if your undergrad in not in nursing, it may be fastest as PA school is only 2 years. I guess it all comes down to what fits your personality the best, and whether you relate more to the medical model or nursing model of health care. Both are great fields and both will essentially operate in the same way and you'll have considerable autonomy even as a PA.

    Lastly, as a male NP you will definitely be somewhat of a "hot commodity" and admissions may be a bit more on your side as they are actively trying to recruit more males into the field. Hope this helps, hit me up if you want to chat more and good luck!!