Family nursing is one of the many specialization choices offered when obtaining an MSN degree. A family nurse practitioner (FNP) performs many duties generally performed by a physician, often working with patients throughout their lifespan. FNPs provide tests and procedures as well as education and counseling, often conducting their work independently in health clinics or doctors’ offices.
Overview of a MSN – Family Nursing Program
- Students learn to exclusively work with patients who see family doctors in private practices, which allows them to better meet the specific needs of their patients.
- Coursework focuses on developing communication and compassion, as with family nursing you develop a long lasting relationship with patients vs. one time visits or emergency care.
- Students learn how to communicate health promotion and disease prevention beginning in childhood and continuing throughout the aging process.
- Students learn to diagnose and initiate treatment plans for acute and chronic diseases within patients of all age groups.
- Coursework ensure that students can educate patients about their health throughout the duration of their professional partnership.
Steps to Become a Family Nurse Practitioner
- Earn an Associate’s Degree in Nursing or a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing.
- Receive a Registered Nurse Certification.
- Enroll and complete a MSN program with a concentration in family care from an accredited school like Capella University, Georgetown University, Kaplan University, South University, or University of Cincinnati.
- Obtain FNP certification and proper licensure, which varies by state.
Family Nurse Practitioner Salary and Career Information
The job setting will vary depending on what specific job you get. Possible options include clinics, private offices, hospice centers, nurse-managed health centers, schools, and nursing homes. While it is not often a prerequisite to find a job, membership with the American Nurses Association (ANA) can increase your employability. Other membership benefits include access to the continuing education library, annual conferences, news updates relevant to the field, savings on ANA books, professional liability insurance, and a vast network to connect with.
The average salary of nurse practitioners varies by location, experience, and the type of employer you have. For more information on your earning potential, please refer to our nursing job outlook page.