Last updated July 27, 2017.
If you're a nurse that's ready to take on a leadership role and work even more closely with patients, you may be a good fit for a family nurse practitioner program in Alabama. Family nurse practitioners (FNPs) work with physicians in order to deliver high-quality care to patients of all ages. As a family NP, you may be an important part of an entire family's medical care.
In Alabama, nurse practitioners are beginning to gain more responsibility, allowing you to put your nurse practitioner education to good use. In recent years, the Alabama Senate passed a law allowing nurse practitioners to prescribe more medications. With the state taking action to further the ability of FNPs to practice to the full extent of their scope, now is an important time for FNPs in Alabama. This is notable, considering the number of veterans in the state, and the 2017 rule allowing NPs to practice in the VA system in the state and nationwide.
To learn more about your options for becoming a Family Nurse Practitioner in Alabama, request program materials from the schools below. We have compiled a comprehensive list of your options, so you can focus on choosing the best school for your needs.
Family NP Program Curriculum in Alabama
There are a variety of ways to earn a nurse practitioner degree; the right one for you depends on your prior education. The family practitioner nursing degree is a Master's degree in nursing, so you must already have a Bachelor's degree to enter this program of study.Some schools, like the University of Alabama in Huntsville, require students to have completed a Bachelor's of Science in Nursing degree.
Other schools, including University of South Alabama, have a few more options. If you have an RN degree but not a BSN, you may go through a RN to MSN program. This helps you earn both a BSN and MSN in one program, and allows you to become a Family NP in a shorter period of time than if you were on a traditional nursing education pathway.
Depending on where you go to school, you may spend between 15 and 30 months in school. University of Alabama in Huntsville requires students to complete four semesters, including 672 clinical hours. The nurse practitioner program at University of South Alabama includes seven semesters and 600 total clinical hours. In general, the expected timeframe for a nurse practitioner degree depends on your workload outside of the classroom.
Some programs are designed for practicing nurses, so they run on a part-time schedule. Other full-time programs are for students who do not intend to work full-time during school. To learn more about all of your options, simply fill out a request for additional information from any of the schools on our site. We aim to help transform the future of nursing, one educated nurse at a time. We want you to become part of that future.
As a nurse practitioner, you may be a key part in the diagnosis and treatment of illnesses. This requires a great deal of specialized education, which you can earn during your nurse practitioner courses. Courses include Advanced Family Nursing, Physio-pathological Basis of Advanced Nursing, Advanced Pharmacology, and Advanced Pathophysiology. You will also take courses intended to further your knowledge of business, healthcare management, policy formation and marketing.
Working as a Family Nurse Practitioner in Alabama
In order to work as a nurse practitioner in Alabama, you must be registered with and licensed by the Alabama Board of Nursing. You can do this by having your official transcript sent from your educational institution to the Board of Nursing. Renewal is required every two years.
In addition to renewing your advanced practice nurse license between September 1 and December 31 in even-numbered years, you must renew your registered nurse license in the same timeframe. To maintain your nurse practitioner license, you have to report six hours of continuing education in pharmacology. These six hours may be part of the overall continuing education requirements for your RN license.
As a nurse in Alabama, you can work in a variety of areas. You might work in a walk-in clinic, such as those found in convenience stores. In this setting, nurse practitioners tend to see patients with acute, non-recurring health problems. You may also prescribe antibiotics and other medications in this setting if you have prescription privileges. You might also work in a traditional clinic, where you see regular patients under the oversight of a doctor. Instead of only seeing patients for acute needs, you may keep patients throughout their lives. Some nurse practitioner employers in Alabama include AseraCare, Corizon, and Concentra.
Per the Alabama State Board of Nursing, nurse practitioners have a reduced scope of practice and must work in collaboration with a physician. They must receive notification within five days or starting or terminating a collaboration.
Nurse practitioners in Alabama learn many different skills that make them an integral part of any health care team. As a result, they may be compensated very well for their skills. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median salary for a nurse practitioner in Alabama is $92,130 (2017). Choosing to study and work in Alabama may be a good choice for you due to the rapidly growing need for skilled nurse practitioners. Per BLS, job openings for nurse practitioners in Alabama are expected to increase 31% by 2024 (BLS, 2017).