Online DNP Women’s Health NP Programs – What’s the Best Program for You?
Recognized as the pinnacle of nursing education, earning a women’s health nurse practitioner Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree sets nurses up to take on any career in the nursing field. In order to be eligible to enter a women’s health nurse practitioner (WHNP) doctorate program, nurses must have a BSN or MSN, a current and unencumbered registered nursing license, and one to two years of experience in women’s health nursing. Depending on program requirements, applicants may be required to submit a resume, references, letters of recommendation, and/or a statement of purpose. Some programs allow nurses to combine earning their MSN or earning their post-master’s certificate with a DNP program.
Earning a women’s health nurse practitioner DNP degree can be a fantastic way to take your nursing career to the next level – especially for nurses who know they want to enter the highest level WHNP positions. There are many career options for nurses who earn their women’s health nurse practitioner DNP. While it’s certainly an option to continue practicing direct patient care in a public or private healthcare organization, many nurse practitioners who earn their DNP choose to go on to roles such as:
- Healthcare administration
- Nursing education
- Private practice
Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of earning a DNP.
- DNP degree holders are recognized as leaders in nursing by the healthcare community
- Nurses at this level are experts in both clinical practice and in healthcare administrative issues
- WHNPs with a DNP may enter academic and research careers as well
- This degree can be costly
- Earning a women’s health nurse practitioner DNP takes longer than other advanced women’s health nurse practitioner degrees
- The DNP curriculum can be very challenging; students must be very committed to their studies
An online women’s health nurse practitioner DNP program typically takes two to three years to complete for students who are able to take classes full-time. Many schools allow up to six years for nurses to complete their DNP courses, which may be necessary for those who wish to continue working while completing their studies. Credit requirements can range from 33 to 95 credits, and depend greatly on what degree the student has before beginning the DNP program. The more advanced the degree prior to beginning the DNP program, the fewer courses will be necessary to complete DNP coursework.
While many women’s health nurse practitioner DNP programs are offered completely online, you may want to choose a hybrid program. A hybrid program offers some classes online, and others in a traditional classroom setting. A hybrid program can be a great way for busy nurses to get the best of both worlds. In hybrid programs, classes are often offered in the evenings or on weekends, making it easier for nurses to attend and interact with faculty members and fellow students.
Over the course of your women’s health nurse practitioner DNP program, you’ll likely go through some of the following courses:
- Health policy leadership
- Clinical and professional integration for women’s health nurse practitioners
- Clinical pharmacotherapeutics
- Reproductive healthcare for women
- Advanced human physiology
In most states, 1,000 or more hours of clinical practice are required to complete a DNP program, and these hours can often be completed at the student’s place of work. You may want to discuss the possibility of taking on a supervisory role at work as a part of your clinical hours for your DNP program. Getting the supervisory experience that you need to succeed in a leadership role after you graduate can be easier to do when you’re working within a system you already know well.
Finding an online or hybrid DNP program in the WHNP specialty is easy with our listings. Browse below to find online programs near you.
University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC)
University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford
University of Missouri – St. Louis
St. Louis, MO
University Of Missouri Kansas City
Kansas City, MO
University at Buffalo
East Tennessee State University
Johnson City, TN