Child Health Experts
Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (PNPs) are health care providers who are dedicated to improving children’s health. PNPs have advanced education in pediatric nursing and health care and they serve children and families in an extensive range of practice settings. Working with pediatricians and other health care providers, PNPs have been enhancing the health care of children for over thirty years.
Pediatric Nurse Practitioners must complete an undergraduate degree in nursing and either 2 (for Masters degree) or 5 (for Doctorate degree) additional years of study in advanced practice nursing in graduate school, where they specialize in pediatrics. When they complete this specialty training, they are known as Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioners (ARNPs). To become a Certified Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (CPNP), the ARNP must then pass a detailed national certification exam testing their knowledge of pediatrics.
What Do PNPs Do?
PNPs serve as pediatric health care providers for well and ill children of all ages. Many parents choose a PNP as their child’s health care provider knowing they will receive individualized quality health care. PNPs may practice in a variety of settings that include but are not limited to primary care settings, such as pediatric offices or clinics, as well as acute care settings, such as hospitals, surgical centers or speciality clinics.
Primary care PNPs offer a variety of services including:
- Provide health maintenance care for children, including well child examinations
- Perform routine developmental screenings
- Diagnose and treat common childhood illnesses
- Provide anticipatory guidance regarding common child health concerns
- Provide childhood immunizations
- Perform school physicals
- Provide care to children who are acutely, chronically, and critically ill
- Perform in-depth physical assessments
- Interpret results of laboratory and diagnostic tests
- Order medications and perform therapeutic treatments in a variety of settings
(Adapted from National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners)