The Pediatric Nurse Practitioner—Acute Care focuses on the management of children with complex acute and chronic health conditions within the hospital or pediatric acute care setting. This includes providing care for children from birth to 21 years with life threatening illnesses and organ dysfunction or failure, negotiating health care delivery systems, monitoring and ensuring the quality of health care practice, providing family centered care, and demonstrating cultural competency.
Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
The Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Role
The scope of practice of the Pediatric Nurse Practitioner includes providing direct patient care management such as performing in-depth physical assessments, interpreting results of laboratory and diagnostic tests, ordering medications, and performing therapeutic treatments in a variety of settings (NAPNAP, 2004).
Certification & Career Opportunities
Graduates of the program are eligible to sit for the Pediatric Nurse Certification Board (PNCB) Acute Care certification exam. Graduates have opportunities to practice in a variety of acute care settings including emergency departments, subspecialty clinics, hospitals and intensive care units.
A minimum of 616 clinical practicum hours will be completed in several pediatric acute care centers. These clinical practicum hours are separate from the DNP practicum hours, which are specific to the DNP project. Experienced pediatric preceptors will work one-on-one with students and along with pediatric specialty faculty, will guide students through their clinical practicum experience.
A minimum of one year of nursing practice is required for program admission. A basic working knowledge of pediatric growth and development, family dynamics and pediatric assessment are cornerstones for moving toward the role of the Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner.
Program of Study
The program can be completed on a full-time basis and is offered in a hybrid format with periodic meetings on campus. Full-time students can complete the program in nine semesters (three calendar years). A part-time option is available for students who would like to complete the program over four calendar years or twelve semesters. This schema will be developed by the DNP Program Director and the PNP Specialty Director.
Courses are offered in block format, in which students are required to attend on-site one week each semester.
Proposed Full-Time Semester Schema
Please note schemas are subject to change.
|Spring Semester 1
||Summer Semester 1
||Fall Semester 1
|Total: 8 credits
||Total: 10 credits||Total: 7 credits|
|Spring Semester 2
||Summer Semester 2
||Fall Semester 2
|Total: 9 credits||Total: 10 credits||Total: 6 credits|
|Spring Semester 3
||Summer Semester 3
||Fall Semester 3
|Total: 12 credits||Total: AC – 13 PC - 12 credits
||Total: 5 credits|
|Total credits: 80 Acute Care, 79 Primary Care
Credits in 9 semesters
Additional information on the role of the Pediatric Nurse Practitioner—Acute Care may be found through national organizations such as:
- The National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners
- The Pediatric Nurse Certification Board
- American Nurses Credentialing Center
- The Association of Faculties of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners
- The National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties