Is a nurse practitioner higher than an RN

While deciding on pursuing a career path in nursing, it's essential for you to understand what should be your educational requirements, skills, and experience you must possess for various types of nurse roles. Most nursing students who aspire to become a nurse practitioner. However, you first have to achieve your certification as a registered nurse first. So is a nurse practitioner higher than an RN? The answer is yes; a nurse practitioner has more authority than an RN.

As this field has various specialties, nurses have the opportunity to develop their skills in various areas by switching their specialties. Nonetheless, most nurses begin their career as a registered nurses, then become nurse practitioners. Let's get to know the major factors that separate RNs from nurse practitioners and what duties they share.

The separating factors among a nurse practitioner and RN

You can find a significant overlap among the roles of nurse practitioner and RN since the nurse practitioner first has to become RN to apply for advanced practice registered nurse. Although to become a nurse practitioner, you have to go through similar steps; it requires for you to complete more academic education, more specialization skill in certain fields, and more knowledge and clinical experience. The major differences in both careers can be seen in their:

  • Nursing degrees
  • Job duties
  • Working environments
  • How many clinical hours were completed by them
  • Practice authority for more responsibility
  • Certification and licensure

Educational requirements

Every nurse has to have proficiency not just in the technical areas of medicine; other than that; they should have knowledge on patient safety, patient compliance, and nursing principles. If you are curious about is a nurse practitioner higher than an RN, you must know about their educational differences. The basic educational difference between the nurse practitioner and RN is that both have to earn a graduate degree to pursue a career as a nurse.

  • Educational requirements for RN

Unlike popular belief, it's not just acquiring a bachelor's degree for becoming a nurse. There are various other degrees with which one can get licensed as a registered nurse. However, every degree course has a different timeline to complete the course. The basic areas that RN education covers are:

  • Life sciences and human behavioral science
  • Human anatomy and physiology
  • Microbiology and chemistry
  • Nursing theory fundamentals and application
  • Care delivery study
  • Fundamentals of pharmacology
  • Data management

Students have to sit for the certification exam once they earn their BSN, AND, or nursing diplomas. But you have to register with the state nursing board where you intend to practice then pass the national council licensure exam.

  • Educational Eligibility for nurse practitioner

Nurse practitioner requires advanced practice, so students have to apply for master's degree. Nurses can also get their MSN degree in the respective specialization course of their choice. Some of the fundamental areas master's degree program covers are:

  • Principles of advanced nursing practice
  • Advanced health assessment education
  • Evidence-based practice
  • Statistics and research methodology
  • Leadership in nursing
  • Population health,
  • Nurse/patient advocacy and healthcare policy

Nurse practitioners are also eligible to pursue a degree in getting a Doctor of Nursing Practice, which is the highest level of education and expertise in the nursing profession.

Typical duties for nurse practitioner and RN

  • Duties of Nurse practitioner

Nurse practitioners share many similar job roles with a physician, such as visiting patients, conduct diagnoses, and generate a treatment plan. Some of the additional duties include:

  • Managing other nurses and staff of the designated clinic.
  • Booking diagnostic tests for their patients
  • They can prescribe medicine and monitor drug interaction as well as side effects
  • Explaining treatment plan to the patient
  • Analyze test results.
  • Duties of RN

RNs are the general caregivers for the patients. Their duty performance involves:

  • Developing nursing care plans
  • Administering IV medications
  • Perform on the doctor's verbal order
  • Complete admission assessments
  • Provide blood products
  • Pronounce time of death (if allowed)

The average pay of a nurse practitioner is more than registered nurse per year. Now that answers your question about; is a nurse practitioner higher than an RN? As nurse practitioners have an advanced degree, they make more money.

A nurse practitioner has more scope and granted authority than a registered nurse. Some states even allow them to work independently, where they can have their own offices. Review your state's requirements to educate yourself about what nurse practitioners have authority to do under their licenses.


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