What's a PNP?
Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (PNPs) are health care providers who are dedicated to improving children's health. PNPs have advanced education in pediatric nursing and health care and they serve children and families in an extensive range of practice settings. Working with pediatricians and other health care providers, PNPs have been enhancing the health care of children for over forty years.
PNPs serve as pediatric health care providers for well and ill children of all ages. Many parents choose a PNP as their child's health care provider knowing they will receive individualized quality health care. PNPs offer a variety of services including:
Provide health maintenance care for children, including well child examinations
Perform routine developmental screenings
Diagnose and treat common childhood illnesses
Provide anticipatory guidance regarding common child health concerns
Provide childhood immunizations
Perform school physicals
What are the Educational Requirements to become a PNP?
In order to become a PNP one must be a registered nurse who has completed Master’s level program for nurse practitioners. As of 2015 the requirement will change and the entry education for a nurse practitioner will be the Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP). Click here to see the position paper by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing regarding the DNP.
Once education is completed the graduate must take a national certifying exam through Pediatric Nurse Certification Board or the American Nurses Credentialing Center. The certification can be in either primary care, acute care, or both depending on educational background. Click here to see the NAPNAP Position Statement on Certification.
What is an Acute Care PNP and is there certification?
As of April 2013, The Pediatric Nursing Certification Board began offering certification for acute care PNPs (CPNP-AC). The following comes from the PNCB website:
The Acute Care PNP role is designed to meet the
specialized physiologic and psychological needs of children with complex
acute and chronic health conditions. AC-PNPs respond to rapidly changing
clinical conditions, including the recognition and management of emerging
health crises, organ dysfunction and failure. In accordance with this
practice focus, Acute Care CPNP® role activities encompass a wide range of NP practice
strategies including contributions to the management of children's illness/health
states, the client-nurses relationship, the teaching-coaching function,
the professional role, managing and negotiating healthcare delivery systems,
monitoring and ensuring the quality of health care practice, providing
family-centered care, and demonstrating cultural competency.
Acute Care CPNP® Goal of Care
goal of care is stabilization of the child, minimizing complications,
and providing physical and psychological care measures. The long-term
goal of care is to restore maximal health potential through implementation
of NP strategies to reduce health risks.
Acute Care CPNP® Practice Setting
The continuum of care spans the
geographic settings of the home, emergency departments, hospitals, subspecialty
clinics, and intensive care units.