So, the kids are getting older and you are ready to get yourself back into work. Have you always been interested in a career in the medical field? It can be a tough one to get into; it requires a lot of education and time, and there are a number of routes you can follow. Maybe you have been put off being a doctor because of the knowledge required and the time it takes to study? Or maybe you have gone off the idea of being a nurse because of the limitations when it comes to patient care? Both of these roles require further education, and if you are a stay at home mom, this could be an issue for you.
If this situation sounds like something you can relate to, then you should take a look at a career as a nurse practitioner. This role does involve extra schooling, but once you are trained, you will have responsibilities that are the same as a physician and you will have a higher salary than that of a nurse.
A nurse practitioner (NP) is also known as an ‘advanced practice registered nurse’ (APRN). NP’s have very similar duties to that of physicians. They can serve as a primary caregiver for an individual or a family. The role of an NP is to carry out patient examinations, diagnose illnesses, prescribe certain medications, make test orders, interpret tests, and refer patients to the relevant specialists. The approval to prescribe drugs that can be addictive may be required, and NP’s may need to be supervised for a set amount of time before being able to practice independently.
It usually takes 6-8 years to become a certified NP. You will need to enroll on a pediatric nurse practitioner degree program in order to qualify. This pediatric nurse practitioner degree program can be done as a college degree at a physical institution, or online. An online course in PALS, for instance, is ideal if you have little ones to look after. To earn the relevant NP certification, you may need to carry out a number of clinical rotation hours to earn this. There is no requirement for the years of experience an NP needs to be certified, however, some employers will include a specific level of experience on their job advertisement.
Most nurse practitioners will get employed in a physician’s office. Here, they will work on their own or under the supervision of a physician. Some NP’s will get jobs in a hospital, an outpatient facility, a drugstore clinic, a nursing home or a home health care service. The minority of qualified NP’s will take work in a college or university, in a business, or in the medical field, where they will hire nurses for temporary, part-time or full-time work.
A nurse practitioner is a highly valued job that is highly satisfying and pays well. This is a great job to go into if you like the idea of working in the medical field and if you have the time to do the studying. The fact that you can get the qualification from home is a huge benefit to being an NP and is something you should definitely consider if you like the sound of this work and have a family to look after.