Advanced Practice Nurses

Nurse-Midwife and Patient

Advanced practice nurses (APNs) are a broad category of registered nurses (RNs) who have completed advanced clinical nurses' educational practice requirements beyond the two to four years of basic nursing education required for all RNs. Under the advanced practice nursing designation fall four categories of nursing specialties: clinical nurse specialists (CNSs), nurse practitioners (NPs), nurse-midwives (NMs), and nurse anesthetists (NAs). According to the U.S. Department of Labor, there are 151,400 advanced practice nurses working in the United States.

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Quick Facts
Alternate Title(s) Clinical Nurse Specialists, Nurse Anesthetists, Nurse Practitioners, Nurse-Midwives
Duties Order, interpret, and evaluate diagnostic tests; record patient data; develop treatment plans; consult closely with physicians; in some cases, prescribe medications and/or other treatments
Salary Range $75,000 to $100,000+
Work Environment Primarily Indoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Nationwide; most opportunities available in large metropolitan areas
Minimum Education Level
  • Master's Degree
School Subjects
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Mathematics
Experience Internships and clinical rotations
Personality Traits
  • Helpful
  • Problem-Solving
  • Scientific
  • Interpersonal
  • Leadership
  • Scientific
Certification or Licensing Required
Special Requirements None
Employment Prospects Excellent
Advancement Prospects Good
Outlook Much Faster than the Average
Career Ladder
  • Nurse Manager, or Physician, or Health Care Executive
  • Advanced Practice Nurse
  • Registered Nurse

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