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Difference Between APRN and NP (With Table)

APRN vs NP

Health Care industry provides the highest service to people all over the world. Nursing plays a most important role in the healthcare industry. Nurses are valuable professionals holding degrees related to their specialization.

APRN and NP provide healthcare services to the patients and performs the required duties based on their specialization. APRN is a nurse who needs a postgraduate degree to achieve APRN and they offer patient-care based on their role limits.

NP is nothing but a Nurse Practitioner and it is a subset of APRN. It requires a graduate degree related to nursing to become an NP. They provide acute and primary services related to healthcare and continuously work in an organized manner with their patients.

There are many similarities between the two, however, there are a few differences as well. Both APRN and NP are related to nursing occupation and offer health care services to their patients and perform various duties based on their specialization.

The difference between APRN and NP is that NP is a subset of APRN. NP needs a graduate degree related to nursing and offers both acute and primary services related to healthcare, whereas APRN requires a Master’s degree or Doctorate to attend any of the specialization exams related to APRN.


 

Comparison Table Between APRN and NP (in Tabular Form)

Parameters of ComparisonAPRNNP
EducationA minimum Master’s degree is needed to attend any of the specialization exams related to APRN.At least, a Master of Science in Nursing is a minimum for NP. Later, Doctor of Nursing practice may be optionally needed in the future.
Typical DutiesBased on specialization, duties vary. For example, surgical management is taken care by nurse anesthetics.NP offers both acute and primary services related to healthcare by diagnosing the illness and regularly monitoring the patient’s health.
MedicationsOnly a few have the authority to prescribe medicines based on their specialization and the state.NP can prescribe medicines. Based on the state laws on practice, types of medicines to be prescribed needs to be decided.
CollaboratorsAn agreement is not needed as APRN will associate and work with hospital doctors, administrators, nurses, and other staff.For some states, NP should mandatorily have collaborative agreements with physicians for them to practice.
Continuing RequirementsBased on nurse specialization, continuity of education may be needed.Mandatory re-certification is needed. Minimum 1000 hours of clinical practice and 75 hours of education based on the current role is required for re-certification.

 

What is APRN?

APRN is nothing but an ‘Advanced Practice Registered Nurse’. APRN is a nurse who has completed their post-graduate degrees such as a Master’s or Doctorate related to nursing.

APRN offers patient-care based on their role limits as they are licensed with the help of the state board of nursing and in some states, they are provided with the authority of prescribing medication and practice on their own without the oversight of a physician.

APRN is defined as a registered nurse with the capability to take complex decisions. They are highly knowledgeable and have the required clinical ability for extended practice as defined by the International Council of Nurses.

There are four types of APRN roles and they are,

  1. Nurse Practitioners (NP)
  2. Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS)
  3. Certified Nurse-midwives (CNM)
  4. Certified Nurse Anesthetists (CNA)

APRN can work across different healthcare-related facilities such as hospitals, long-term care facilities, and clinics in the ambulance. In some states, APRN can practice on their own whereas in the other they need to have an agreement with their physician and this agreement is termed as a collaborative agreement.

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What is NP?

NP is nothing but a Nurse Practitioner and it is a subset of APRN. NP will have a graduate degree related to nursing and they will work continuously for many years in an organized manner with their patients. They provide referrals for the required specialized health care.

NP’s are professionally qualified and offers both acute and primary services related to healthcare. There are some pre-requisites to become an NP, one must either have an MS in Nursing or Doctor of Nursing Practice in one of the six fields mentioned below,

  1. Neonatal
  2. Pediatrics
  3. Psychiatric
  4. Adult-Gerontology
  5. Family/Individual Across Life Span
  6. Gender-Related

NP’s are permitted to perform the following services,

  1. Monitoring the individual’s history and carrying out a physical examination.
  2. Educating healthy habits and lifestyle.
  3. Managing lab tests and other procedures.
  4. Diagnosing the illness and regularly monitoring patient’s health.
  5. Properly analyzing patient’s health history and treating the disease.

Main Differences Between APRN and NP

  • Both APRN and NP are educated professionals related to nursing providing service for the healthcare industry. They provide healthcare services for different patients. The main difference between APRN and NP is that NP is a subset of APRN. NP mandatorily need a Master’s degree or a Doctorate to attempt and achieve APRN whereas Graduate or Master of Science degree related to nursing is needed to become an NP.
  • APRN can practice in private clinics, hospitals, or even in settings related to education or healthcare whereas NP can practice in ambulatory clinics, private clinics and community clinics.
  • APRN has four types of specializations or roles such as CRNA, CNM, CNS and NP whereas NP has the specialization related to family health, neonatal, pediatric primary care, mental health, etc.
  • APRN does not need any agreement for practice as they will associate and work with hospital doctors, administrators, nurses and other staffs whereas NP needs collaborative agreements with physicians for practice.
  • Few of the APRN have the authority to prescribe medicines based on their specialization and the state they are working whereas NP can prescribe medicines based on the state laws on practice and types of medicines to be prescribed needs to be decided.

 

Conclusion

Globally, there are many professional services and one of the most important service is the healthcare service. Nursing occupation provides the utmost care and top-level service in the healthcare industry. APRN and NP are related to nursing occupation and require a related professional degree to achieve it.

Both APRN and NP has their own benefits, but NP is a subset of APRN. APRN requires a minimum of Master’s degree or Doctorate to attend the exam whereas NP requires a Graduate degree or Master of Science in Nursing. Both APRN and NP have their own roles, duties, and specialization. They both provide great service to people and the healthcare industry.


 

Word Cloud for Difference Between APRN and NP

The following is a collection of the most used terms in this article on APRN and NP. This should help in recalling related terms as used in this article at a later stage for you.