Welcome to the Nurse Practitioner Salary and Career Center
Here at the Nurse Practitioner Salary and Career Center, our mission is simple: to provide you with the resources you need to best prepare for an exciting career as a nurse practitioner. Our goal is to offer you resources on degree programs, certification requirements, and even jobs available in your area.
A career as a nurse practitioner, regardless of specialization, can be an exciting career and the nurse practitioner salary is one of the most rewarding in the health care industry. While the profession requires an extensive amount of training and education, employment opportunities are steadily increasing in many regions across the country. With positions available in a wide variety of working environments including hospitals, private medical practices, and inpatient care facilities, finding a rewarding position within the field is well within your reach.
If you have spoken to individuals currently employed as nurse practitioners, you’ll often hear over and over again that the career offers intellectually challenging work and that each day can bring new and exciting tasks. The opportunity to work in a dynamic professional environment provides the nurse practitioner with the ability to add to their existing foundation of knowledge with each new day and patient.
Jobs as a nurse practitioner tend to offer flexibility, excellent benefits packages, and in many cases perks such as tuition reimbursement to help you finance your education. You can choose to specialize in a variety of fields, which affords you the chance to offer patient care and treatment which matches your unique skill sets and personality. Perhaps it’s your dream to work with children. Maybe you have always hoped to offer care to acutely ill patients in an emergency room or intensive care setting. If you love the science and process of child birth, working on a labor or mother and baby floor may be the best choice for you.
All of these benefits make working as a nurse practitioner a very attractive career choice for those interested in stable, well-paying employment in the health care industry. We hope that you’ll take the time to browse the various articles and resources here at the Nurse Practitioner Salary and Career Center and use them to help you successfully prepare yourself for a career in this exciting profession.
Giving Back: World Volunteer Opportunities as a Nurse Practitioner
As a nurse practitioner, you have a passion for helping others. Currently, there are millions of underserved people around the world in dire need of healthcare services. By volunteering abroad, you provide aid to patients on a global scale, regardless of race, culture, or religion. Volunteer work is an excellent way to see the world, gain new and valuable medical experience, and bring your talents to those who need it.
There is no shortage of opportunities for nurse practitioners to volunteer in third world countries. Clinicians of the World, United Planet, and ONAAT are just a few of the non-profit organizations to consider if you are looking to experience a new environment and give back to the underserved global community through your skills and compassion.
Clinicians of the World
Clinicians of the World was recently founded in 2010 and offers specialized medical care, humanitarian aid, and health education to individuals around the world. Through education and the promotion of health awareness, Clinicians of the World strives to foster both health and self-reliance in the hopes that individuals will take responsibility for their own health, even after volunteers have gone. This organization is currently recruiting volunteer nurse practitioners for a fall medical mission journey to Haiti.
Serving the global community for over a decade, United Planet’s goal is to establish cross-cultural understanding and bring vital services to those in need. As part of their mission statement, they note the importance of creating “a world in which all people understand, respect, and support one another.” United Planet offers volunteer opportunities for nurse practitioners to work alongside physicians and other medical staff in Ghana, Guatemala, Ecuador, Romania, Peru, and Tanzania.
One Nurse At A Time
For a comprehensive database of organizations providing medical missions abroad, contact One Nurse At A Time (ONAAT). Since 2007, ONAAT has worked to support nurse practitioners in humanitarian efforts. Not only does ONAAT provide information on where nurse practitioners can volunteer, but they also offer scholarships to help offset the out of pocket expenses that accompany a medical mission trip. And because ONAAT believes networking is vital in encouraging nurses to engage in and continue humanitarian efforts around the globe, this organization prides itself on offering a number of networking opportunities for volunteers to share their stories and experiences with one another.
What To Expect
The cost of volunteering abroad will vary from organization to organization, but all costs will cover travel, lodging, and essentials you will need for your trip. Your fee will be paid directly to your volunteer organization, who will take care of booking your flight and all other necessary arrangements.
Volunteering as a nurse practitioner means giving up the comforts of home and traveling in third world conditions. When traveling with a reputable non-profit organization, you will have lodging in comfortable, secure housing provided by the organization. Depending on your mission destination, however, you will likely not have hot water or air conditioning. Not only will your housing accommodations be quite different from what you are used to at home, you will be working under rather different conditions as well. As a volunteer nurse practitioner in a third world country, you can expect very basic medical facilities, despite the fact that you are likely to encounter difficult and even shocking medical cases.
As a volunteer nurse practitioner, your experience abroad will be one that you will never forget. Although it can, at times, be physically, mentally, and emotionally exhausting, a medical mission trip is one that will be both fulfilling and personally rewarding.
How Nurse Practitioner Led Clinics Are Paving the Way for a New Healthcare Model
As baby boomers begin to flood the healthcare system, the role of Nurse Practitioners is changing. There’s a shortage of doctors, and hospitals need to add more doctors but can’t afford to. Nurse Practitioners are filling the gap. So, what’s the difference between a Nurse Practitioner and a doctor and what does this mean for the healthcare industry?
Basically speaking, doctors are trained to diagnose and treat patients with illnesses and diseases. This is called the medical model of healthcare. In this situation, most doctors don’t try to find out what the cause of the illness may be and this style of diagnosis is probably why many patients complain that their doctor doesn’t listen to them. On the other hand, Nurse Practitioners are trained in the nursing model of healthcare which includes human response and the prevention of illnesses. Nurse Practitioners are likely to spend more time with a patient trying to find out the cause of the illness and how to cure or prevent the illness from getting worse.
Increasing healthcare costs and doctor’s salaries are also playing a role in the expanding responsibilities of Nurse Practitioners. As many boomers are making more trips to their doctors and hospitals, hospitals need to increase their staff of doctors and so do family physician offices. This can’t be done with a shrinking base of doctors, therefore, many hospitals and family physician offices are adding more Nurse Practitioners to their staffs.
Due to the expanding role of Nurses, the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (The Ministry) in Canada began building 25 new clinics in 2007 that will be led by Nurse Practitioners. All the clinics are scheduled to be fully operational by the end of this year. This new primary healthcare delivery model is completely voluntary for patients and it fills the need for the shortage of doctors. All of the Nurse Practitioners in these clinics will work closely with family physicians and other healthcare professionals in their area.
The Ministry sees the major role of Nurse Practitioners as providing healthcare services to many people who do not have access to a primary care physician. Patients living near a Nurse Practitioner led clinic will now have access to better healthcare, and the Nurse Practitioner will become their lead primary care professional. This will enhance the local healthcare system and provide more services for chronic disease management and disease prevention to patients.
The trend of increasing responsibilities for Nurses is happening in both Canada and the United States. Looking ahead into the future as these trends continue, the nursing profession will need to make changes. Currently, Nurses are not encouraged to pursue a higher education.
The Institute of Medicine in the United States has recommended some changes in requirements for the nursing profession to reach its full potential. They encourage public and private businesses to provide resources to help nurses with their education. Also recommended is the removal of any regulatory or institutional obstacles such as limits on a Nurse Practitioner’s scope of practice. This includes allowing nurses the ability to write prescriptions for certain medications. Another recommendation is implementing a residency program where nurses can gain hands-on medical training working with doctors and other healthcare professionals. These recommendations will help improve the healthcare system and patients will reap the full benefits of a nurse’s training skills and knowledge.
As healthcare continuously evolves and new healthcare models emerge or are expanded, change is evident in the current healthcare system. By creating Nurse Practitioner led clinics and letting Nurse Practitioners take a leading role in healthcare, the system is changing for the better.