Nurse Practitioner Career

Job Description: Diagnose and treat acute, episodic, or chronic illness, independently or as part of a healthcare team. May focus on health promotion and disease prevention. May order, perform, or interpret diagnostic tests such as lab work and x rays. May prescribe medication. Must be registered nurses who have specialized graduate education.


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Nurse Practitioner Career

What Nurse Practitioners do:

  • Analyze and interpret patients' histories, symptoms, physical findings, or diagnostic information to develop appropriate diagnoses.
  • Consult with, or refer patients to, appropriate specialists when conditions exceed the scope of practice or expertise.
  • Detect and respond to adverse drug reactions, with special attention to vulnerable populations such as infants, children, pregnant and lactating women, or older adults.
  • Develop treatment plans, based on scientific rationale, standards of care, and professional practice guidelines.
  • Diagnose or treat acute health care problems, such as illnesses, infections, or injuries.
  • Diagnose or treat chronic health care problems, such as high blood pressure and diabetes.
  • Diagnose or treat complex, unstable, comorbid, episodic, or emergency conditions in collaboration with other health care providers as necessary.
  • Educate patients about self-management of acute or chronic illnesses, tailoring instructions to patients' individual circumstances.
  • Maintain complete and detailed records of patients' health care plans and prognoses.
  • Maintain current knowledge of state legal regulations for nurse practitioner practice, including reimbursement of services.
  • Order, perform, or interpret the results of diagnostic tests, such as complete blood counts (CBCs), electrocardiograms (EKGs), and radiographs (x-rays).
  • Prescribe medication dosages, routes, and frequencies, based on such patient characteristics as age and gender.
  • Prescribe medications based on efficacy, safety, and cost as legally authorized.
  • Provide patients or caregivers with assistance in locating health care resources.
  • Read current literature, talk with colleagues, or participate in professional organizations or conferences to keep abreast of developments in nursing.
  • Recommend diagnostic or therapeutic interventions with attention to safety, cost, invasiveness, simplicity, acceptability, adherence, and efficacy.
  • Recommend interventions to modify behavior associated with health risks.
  • Schedule follow-up visits to monitor patients or evaluate health or illness care.
  • Treat or refer patients for primary care conditions, such as headaches, hypertension, urinary tract infections, upper respiratory infections, and dermatological conditions.
  • Counsel patients about drug regimens and possible side effects or interactions with other substances, such as food supplements, over-the-counter (OTC) medications, or herbal remedies.
  • Keep abreast of regulatory processes and payer systems, such as Medicare, Medicaid, managed care, and private sources.
  • Maintain departmental policies and procedures in areas such as safety and infection control.
  • Perform routine or annual physical examinations.
  • Provide patients with information needed to promote health, reduce risk factors, or prevent disease or disability.
  • Supervise or coordinate patient care or support staff activities.
  • Advocate for accessible health care that minimizes environmental health risks.
  • Perform primary care procedures such as suturing, splinting, administering immunizations, taking cultures, and debriding wounds.

What work activities are most important?

Importance Activities

Assisting and Caring for Others - Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.

Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.

Performing for or Working Directly with the Public - Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

Developing and Building Teams - Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.

Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.

Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.

Training and Teaching Others - Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.

Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.

Coaching and Developing Others - Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.

Communicating with Persons Outside Organization - Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.

Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others - Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.

Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People - Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.

Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others - Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.

Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates - Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.

Provide Consultation and Advice to Others - Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.

Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.

Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

Developing Objectives and Strategies - Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.

Scheduling Work and Activities - Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.

Performing Administrative Activities - Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

Selling or Influencing Others - Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.

Monitoring and Controlling Resources - Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.

Performing General Physical Activities - Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

Handling and Moving Objects - Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

Holland Code Chart for a Nurse Practitioner