Nursing students can pursue education in various ways. They may follow diploma programs, associate degree, or bachelor degree program pathways.
RNs serve patients in various roles today and provide critical patient care services. However, the health of many individuals and communities continues to be compromised by social determinants of health and healthcare inequities.
In addition to the patient care duties nurses perform, they conduct research, teach, impact public policy, lead healthcare systems, and consult with corporations. Graduate-prepared nurses are in high demand to fill established and emerging roles. An acute care nurse practitioner programs online can be a fantastic way to advance your nursing career and specialize in providing critical care to patients in hospitals and other acute care settings.
Nursing is a complex and critical career. Nurses must be able to work in various healthcare settings, provide holistic care, and deliver services in the face of a rapidly changing healthcare environment.
The profession faces a nursing shortage. The supply of nurses needs to catch up with the demand for nursing services, and many nursing programs need to be completed or turned away qualified applicants.
To overcome the nursing shortage, the industry must develop pipeline programs to encourage grade school, middle, and high school students to pursue a degree in nursing. Those programs must include mentoring, boosting professional socialization, and nurturing racial and gender diversity. These initiatives will help ensure that the next generation of nurses has the tools and skills necessary to meet patient needs.
Despite the current shortage of nurses, effective nurse education can alleviate this issue by supporting RNs through professional development opportunities and skill building. This is important because healthcare standards are constantly changing, and new nursing professionals can only keep up if they receive proper instruction.
Until about a hundred years ago, most nursing education was hospital-based and apprenticeship-like. In this system, students exchanged their labor for instruction, allowing them to take the exam to become professional nurses. Most nurses typically obtain professional nursing qualifications by enrolling in two-year or four-year programs at community colleges, comprehensive colleges, and universities.
Many online acute care nurse practitioner programs require nursing students to participate in clinical experience, often in an intensive care or emergency care setting. In most cases, these placements are arranged locally, and students work alongside a certified preceptor who helps them learn how to assess patient needs, administer medications and treatments, monitor vital signs, and provide appropriate care.
The theoretical and practical instruction nurses receive in preparation for their responsibilities as health care providers is known as nursing education. This type of education can include courses in patient assessment, nursing diagnosis, and nursing care.
The nursing profession is evolving quickly, and nurses must stay on top of healthcare, leadership, and policy developments. They also must develop the skills to work collaboratively and be willing to search for new solutions to help their patients.
Nurses who have a degree at the bachelor’s or master’s level may decide to continue their education and pursue an online doctor of nursing practice (DNP) program. In this type of program, students will study advanced nursing practice and specialized clinical areas like acute care, which is an option that may appeal to those interested in a mix of clinical and critical nursing skills. Alternatively, an online psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP) program might work well for those with an interest in this area of nursing.
There is a lot of demand for nurses with the right skills and training, which can help you land a great job in this field. As a nurse practitioner, you can communicate with patients of all ages and work with doctors, social workers, and other healthcare professionals to determine the best treatment plan for acute or critically ill individuals. Nurse practitioners also have the flexibility to specialize in a specific medical area based on their interests and career goals.
Whether you pursue an online MSN or DNP acute care nurse practitioner pathway, you must complete several clinical placements to put your classroom learning into practice. These practicums typically occur in a hospital or emergency setting, and many programs have relationships with local hospitals so that students can gain experience close to home without having to relocate. A few NP programs also offer an online post-master’s certificate, which allows nursing graduates to build niche expertise in just a few years.