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Family Nurse Practitioners (FNP): Everything You Need To Know

The role of family nurse practitioners is crucial to the healthcare system as they provide care and guidance to patients of all ages. Suppose you are a nurse eager to get an advanced degree and treat a full range of patients, from infants to the elderly. In that case, you are likely considering becoming an FNP. Let us take a closer look at what Family Nurse Practitioners do, what skills they need, the wages they earn, and many other factors that will help you make your decision

What is a Family Nurse Practitioner?

A family nurse practitioner (FNP) is an advanced practice registered nurse who has completed specialized graduate education and provides primary healthcare to everyone. By providing excellent care, these professionals improve the quality and efficiency of the healthcare system.

As an FNP, you will provide your services to individuals or families throughout their lifespan. Hence, if you like to make long-term connections and get to know people, becoming an FNP may be your best choice. But let's also look at some characteristics and skills that a good FNP should possess.

Skills and characteristics you need to become an FNP

As an FNP, you must be well-rounded when it comes to social skills. You must possess the following skills:

  • Leadership Skills to guide other nurses and aides.
  • Decision-making skills to diagnose and treat patients.
  • Interpersonal skills to coordinate care with other co-workers.
  • Organization skills for multitasking and practice management.
  • Communication skills to share information with patients and their families.

The personal characteristics you must have are-

  • Resourcefulness to be able to develop treatment plans and conduct research.
  • Compassion to understand patients' needs, beliefs, and situations.
  • Attention to detail for noting and tracking the patient's symptoms and changes.
  • Being able to work under a lot of pressure.
  • Being able to make decisions autonomously.

The roles and duties of FNP:

When you become an FNP, you will concentrate on delivering family-focused care. As discussed before, you will be taking care of people in all age groups, ranging from babies to senior citizens and everybody in between.

As an FNP, you will not only diagnose illnesses but also be responsible for curing them. You will perform physical exams, order tests, and procedures, diagnose and treat illness, prescribe medication, and teach your patients about healthy lifestyles and disease prevention.

Moreover, FNPs help establishes consistent office procedures, create individualized patient care plans, and create educational materials. As a result, you will be the essential provider of preventive care services that will help reduce repeats of illness and prevent emergency room and hospital admission.

Your duties may include the following:

  • Maintain a record of patient health information.
  • Conduct physical examinations.
  • Assess and observe symptoms in patients.
  • Order tests and analyzes results.
  • Identify physical and mental health problems.
  • Keep track of symptom changes and treatment responses.
  • Plan and administer treatment.
  • Prescribe medicines.
  • Maintain communication with family members.
  • Encourage healthy eating, exercise, and lifestyle choices.
  • Communicate with the patient's other caregivers.
  • Provide referrals to specialists.

Where do FNPs work?

As an FNP, you can work with hospitals, private practice, physician offices, nursing homes, community clinics, and government or occupational settings. Also, some states provide full authority to FNPs to operate autonomously. Still, other needs them to work under a physician's supervision. Though the perception authority may vary from state to state, all FNPs have the power to write prescriptions with or without the supervision of a doctor.

What is the salary of an FNP?

When you have an advanced practice nursing degree, you earn a higher salary than a registered nurse. And the same holds true for FNPs. According to salary.com, the wages of an FNP typically range from $108,460 to $126,980.  

The salary with change from state to state. But you must not just look at the amount in pay when selecting an FNP job. You should also consider the cost of living in the area and the additional perks like health and dental insurance, retirement benefits, educational benefits, etc.

Conclusion:

We hope that you have received all of the necessary information you need to make an informed decision to become an FNP. Suppose you think you have all the essential skills and find the job description and responsibilities intriguing. In that case, you must start preparing to become an FNP immediately. If you want some extra help to make the preparation journey easier for you, you can check out our FNP review. This course will prepare you for the license exam and help you pass it the first time.