Nurse Practitioners are licensed independent practitioners who provide primary and/or specialty nursing and medical care in outpatient and inpatient settings. They are registered nurses (RNs) with specialized advanced education (most have master’s degrees and many have doctorates) and clinical competency to provide nursing & medical care. Services include, but are not limited to admission/discharge of patients, physical assessment, treatment, diagnosis, ordering/interpreting diagnostic & laboratory tests, performing invasive/non-invasion surgical procedures and prescription of pharmacologic agents and non-pharmacologic therapies. Teaching and counseling individuals, families and groups are a major part of NP practice.
[There are approximately 225,000 NPs practicing in the U.S.]
American Association of Nurse Practitioners (http://www.aanp.org)