Respond to Student A and Student B posts by sharing your thoughts on their specialty, supporting their choice or offering suggestions if they have yet to choose.
Background information on me: I am psychiatric registered nurse, I am currently working in a psychiatry hospital. I am completing a Masters in advanced psychiatric nurse practitioner. My second choice of specialty was family nurse practitioner
APA Format, Min 2 resources
Discussion – Week 10
Deciding to go back to school to obtain my master’s degree in nursing was a big decision for me. I truly love my job working bedside as an ICU nurse, but I know that it is not something I want to do long-term. My passion has always been in preventative care, helping people make healthy choices and manage their health before problems reach a point of needed advanced care. As I weighed my current job satisfaction against my goals for the future, I finally decided that it was time to advance my career. I thought that would be the hardest part – it wasn’t.
Knowing I was going back to school, the next challenge became determining what I wanted to specialize in. There are so many opportunities for APRNs, and even with a specific goal in mind there are still many ways to reach it. I was fortunate enough to know what school I wanted to go to already, based on a friend’s great reviews of it, but I still had multiple programs to choose from (Walden, n.d.). Weighing the pros and cons of each program, I had to really think about what I waned to do with my career and how each option would affect my future possibilities. I knew that my priority was my family, finding a way to balance my working hours with my household. This helped me eliminate the acute care options right away. Pediatrics has never been a primary interest of mine, so that helped further narrow things down. With much consideration, my choices were narrowed to adult/gero primary care, FNP, or psych.
I had to weigh how practical each of these specialties would be for me throughout my career. One of my goals with my family is to move overseas, with the plan of working in telehealth for a US company. Nurse practitioners are not recognized in most countries, so I would need security in my speciality and plenty of options for telehealth work (ThriveAP, 2018). This led me to my final round of decisions: FNP or psych. Both have great options for telehealth, and I feel secure in knowing that I will always be able to find plenty of jobs in either of these fields. I had a lot of pressure from a friend to choose psych, he reasoned that it pays better and I could always go back to get my FNP later on. However, as I said before, preventative care is my passion and ties in perfectly with my previous bachelor’s in public health. FNPs work with their patients through their entire life, guiding them in the best health choices and forming true relationships and understandings with them (AANP, n.d.b). While it may not pay as well as other specialities, it is something I know I will always have an interest and opportunity in, and a career that I am confident will make me happy in the long-run.
Starting this journey to becoming a nurse practitioner, the organization that stands out to me is the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP). With a mission of empowering all NPs and promoting their practice, I believe they will provide me quite a few resources as I advance through my career (AANP, n.d.a). I want to stay relevant in my education and learn more about nursing policy and advocacy, and this organization will give me a great starting point for that. Having a group of like-minded peers will be invaluable as I progress in healthcare. In order to become a part of this organization, it is as simple as signing up. They offer different membership levels, so as I complete my program and start working I will be able to choose the membership best suited to my needs. Through the entirety of my career and beyond, the AANP will serve as a valuable resource for me.
American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) (n.d.a). About the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP). Retrieved April 25, 2022, from https://www.aanp.org/about/about-the-american-association-of-nurse-practitioners-aanp.
American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) (n.d.b). Nurse Practitioners in Primary Care. Retrieved April 25, 2022, from https://www.aanp.org/advocacy/advocacy-resource/position-statements/nurse-practitioners-in-primary-care.
ThriveAP (2018, July 19). 3 Ways to Work Internationally as a Nurse Practitioner. [Blog]. Retrieved April 25, 2022, from https://thriveap.com/blog/3-ways-work-internationally-nurse-practitioner.
Walden University (n.d.). Masters of Science in Nursing (MSN) Online. Retrieved April 25, 2022, from https://www.waldenu.edu/online-masters-programs/master-of-science-in-nursing.
Family Nurse Practitioner Specialty
My choice of nursing specialty within Walden's MSN program is Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP). An FNP specializes in patients' primary and specialty care across all the lifespans. FNPs focus on preventative care and monitoring/treating long-term health issues (Johnson & Johnson Nursing, n.d.).
I didn't have any difficulties making this choice as I knew that before I became a nurse, I wanted to become an FNP. As I became a more seasoned nurse with experience working with older adults, I knew I didn't want to limit myself to the senior population. Therefore I knew I didn't want to become an Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner. As I continued working as a nurse, I also knew I didn't want to work in an inpatient setting for the rest of my career. I'm most interested in working in an outpatient environment where the hours and schedules are more regular than in a hospital. Therefore I knew I didn't want to become an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner. Through this process of elimination, I knew that the FNP route would give me the most versatile option of working with both children and adults in any healthcare setting. Recently I've been more interested in the dermatology and cosmetic surgery field of nursing. I aspire to specialize as a Cosmetic Surgery/Dermatology NP eventually.
Nurse Practitioner Organizations
As an APRN, it's essential to become a member of a professional nursing organization. One benefit to joining a nursing organization is to become an advocate for the nursing community and profession. Nursing organizations can also provide opportunities for professional development, networking, career growth, and mentorship (Echevarria, 2018). Some organizations offer different options that others do not; therefore, it's essential to consider one's specialization and weigh the costs and benefits before joining (Echevarria, 2018). One organization I could consider joining once I obtain my FNP is the Society of Dermatology Nurse Practitioners (SDNP). This particular organization would be ideal because one of its benefits is that they serve dermatology NPs solely. Like many other organizations, the SDNP offers educational webinars and symposiums, opportunities for fellow dermatology NPs to network, and volunteer opportunities (SDNP, n.d.). The SDNP provides a variety of memberships: active member, fellow active member, student member, and introductory corporate member. As a student, I could become a student member, which requires a $100 fee, and I must be working towards becoming a Dermatology NP (SDNP, n.d.). Once I have my license, I could become an active member or a fellow active member. An active member requires a $135 membership fee and focuses on someone who has a strong emphasis in dermatology but is not certified or the main focus of work. An active fellow member requires a $135 membership fee and is an individual who is a certified Dermatology NP and practices full or part-time (SDNP, n.d.).
Echevarria, I. (2018). Make connections by joining a professional nursing organization. Nursing, 48 (12), 35-38. doi: 10.1097/01.NURSE.0000547721.84857.cb.
Johnson & Johnson Nursing. (n.d.). Family nurse practitioner at a glance. https://nursing.jnj.com/specialty/family-nurse-practitioner
Society of Dermatology Nurse Practitioners (SDNP). (n.d.). Why join the Society of Dermatology Nurses Practitioners? https://sdnp.memberclicks.net/assets/docs/Why%20Join%20the%20SDNP.pdf
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