Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

A career in the field of nursing can be possibly a long-term one. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of nurses is expected to increase faster than the average of all occupations between 2012 and 2022. These healthcare professionals may provide basic health care to patients in clinics, hospitals and other healthcare settings. Some nurses also look after patients in critical conditions while others specialize in providing healthcare services to the elderly. Acute care nurse practitioners are responsible for catering to the needs of critically and acutely ill patients. They may look after patients with chronic diseases such as renal ailments or heart failure.

An acute care nurse practitioner works in collaboration with doctors and administers the treatment prescribed by surgeons and physicians. Performing physical assessment, diagnostic tests and interventional procedures are some of the responsibilities of these professionals. They may also handle and maintain health records, and provide post-operative care.

Acute care nurse practitioners may need to operate various kinds of equipment, including cardiac output monitoring units or accessories, clinical incubators or infant warmers and emergency or resuscitation carts. Medical suction or vacuum appliances, nebulizer or accessories or tablet crushers and other accessories are also used in this field.

Skills for Acute Care Nurse Practitioners

Acute care nurse practitioners need to have good decision-making skills and the ability to work under stressful situations. These nurses should also have organization and leadership skills. Critical to this profession is effective communication and advanced problem-solving skills.

Educational Requirements

A bachelor’s degree in nursing can help students become acute care nurse practitioners. This program may take 4 years to complete, or longer or less than that, depending on the enrollment status of the students. It may instruct students in various subjects such as anatomy, biology, and microbiology. The next step is to earn a master’s degree with a focus in acute care nursing. The master’s degree may take 1-2 years to complete, and depending on the route that students opt to take, may be completed sooner or later. The curriculum may include topics such as pharmacology, epidemiology, pathology and physiology.

Some online schools also programs for aspiring acute care nurse practitioners. The online programs are particularly useful for the ones who want to maintain the balance between their personal and professional lives. Students can study from any location at their individual schedule and earn a degree at their own pace.


Students who meet the degree requirements can sit for the certification exam Adult-Gerontology Acute Care. The certification exam is conducted by the American Nurses Credentialing Center or the American Association of Critical Care Nurses.


Acute care nurse practitioners generally need 1-2 years of training. This includes on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. They may also have to complete an apprenticeship program.

Career Prospects

Career prospects for acute care nurses are expected to grow by up to 21% from 2012 to 2022, faster than the average for all occupations. They can possibly work in nursing home, hospitals or other medical settings.

The qualification, location and type of job are some of the factors that may determine the income of nurses. According to O*Net, the median annual wage for acute care nurse in 2012 was $65,470.


Ask an Expert

Q:Can you tell me about the job description of an acute care nurse practitioner?

A:ACNP's provide clinical and primary care to acutely-ill patients, chronically ill patients, and critically ill patients. These nurses are can be found working in different healthcare institutions such as hospitals, emergency departments, and even in home care settings. Job responsibilities include diagnosing tests, identifying age specific healthcare needs, implementing interventions, monitoring clinical care effectiveness, and administering medication.

Q:What are the benefits of pursuing online acute care nurse practitioner programs?

A:In an online acute care nurse practitioner program, you can study at your own pace. Online programs have proved to be more cost-effective, flexible, and convenient in many ways. All you need is a laptop and a reliable internet connection to enroll in an online program. Browse through our webpage for more detail.

Q:What id the basic acute care nurse practitioner salary?

A:According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, registered nurses make a median annual income of $65,470. The exact income of nurses will depend upon the specialization area, practice, employer organization, and certification. Nursing is ranked among the fastest growing healthcare fields and can be a suitable career choice for those who wish to help the ill and the injured.

Q:I was reading about an acute care nurse practitioner salary and I came across RN programs. Can you tell me about these programs?

A:RN programs are designed to prep students for nursing careers ahead. This nursing program ranks among the most popular nursing qualification. There are many popular nursing schools that offer RN degree programs to students. The program not only provides students with theoretical knowledge, but also emphasizes on practical skill development.

Ask your Question

* All Fields are Required