We found 5 Family Nurse Practitioner Programs in Illinois.
A nursing shortage has strained Illinois hospitals as of late. The state has seen growth in preventative care but has also seen an increase in new health problems, leading to a less-than-ideal standard of care whereby patients aren't getting the focus they deserve.
It is at this time that the current healthcare workforce needs more caring and knowledgeable nurses to tend to these growing health problems, especially for the many low-income families that need it.
Registered nurses or recent graduates who want to make a more significant impact in their current healthcare role are encouraged to consider further education in a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) program.
FNPs are family-focused nurses who have capabilities similar to medical doctors and who work alongside other medical professionals to improve the responsiveness and efficiency of our health care system.
All FNPs must receive their education in an advanced degree program, and most FNPs enter a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program to obtain an MSN degree concentrated in FNP courses.
Moreover, in whatever healthcare setting you prefer to work in, having an MSN-FNP degree can help you advance into important, authoritative roles.
As a student, you can gain valuable insight from the program through the theoretical and clinical applications of each course, and through fellow students and professors.
Illinois FNP Education Requirements
In 2017, the state of Illinois passed a law that expanded the professional capacity of nurse practitioners in the state as outlined in the state's Nurse Practitioner Act.
Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) are now allowed to practice without needing to enter into a written collaborative agreement with a doctor.
Thus, FNPs who wish to take on the role of primary care providers can now do so by becoming certified APRNs. Certified FNPs who also hold a registered nurse license in the state of Illinois can complete an examination to become certified APRNs through one of the state's five approved credentialing bodies.
Online FNP Programs You Can Take in Illinois
Trying to differentiate between FNP programs in Illinois can be challenging. Should you go with an on-campus option or does online make more sense? How long could this take for me to complete? We highlighted some of those things in randomly selected online programs you can take in Illinois.
Bradley University is a private school whose graduate nursing school programs and in particular, it's MSN and DNP have received recognition for the educational performance. It offers four online pathways, all accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, for those interested in pursuing a career as an FNP.
The offerings include:
- an ADN/Diploma to MSN-FNP
- a BSN to MSN-FNP
- a BSN to DNP-FNP
- and an MSN to FNP certificate
Bradley prides itself on having a 100 percent online program meaning there are no residency requirements and clinical rotations can be done locally.
Upon completion of any of the three tracks, graduates are able to sit in for the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) certification exam. In terms of curriculum, the three tracks overlap in their delivery of common FNP courses including advanced pathophysiology, advanced pharmacology, and principles of FNP practice specific to certain patient populations including women, adults, and children.
In addition, the MSN and DNP tracks offer courses in leadership, policy, and legal and ethical issues. Bradley's MSN and DNP tracks are also distinct from many other online MSN-FNP and DNP-FNP programs in that they offer courses in statistical procedures.
Many programs tend to require statistics courses as a prerequisite and therefore do not make it part of their curriculum. With regards to cost, you can expect to pay about $890 per semester hour plus additional fees.
Resurrection University is an institution that focuses solely on health education, and it aims to create health leaders. It strives to maintain a diverse learning community that is united by the Catholic values of faith, hope, and healing.
The university is located in Chicago's historical and trendy Wicker Park neighborhood and enjoys a green campus that is Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) certified.
To attend the program, students pay approximately $840 per credit hour plus additional fees.
Geared toward working nurses with BSNs, students are typically only required to be on campus one evening per week. For more specific financial aid information, it is highly recommended that you contact the university directly.
In terms of academics, Resurrection University offers a Family Health Nurse Practitioner Master's Program. The MSN Nurse Practitioner program is expected to be completed in eight semesters and is comprised of 48 credit hours and 670 residency hours.
Students are required to complete four core courses, four clinical core courses, and ten specialty courses, which encompass residency hours.
Throughout the program, students have access to state-of-the-art technology including i-Human patients software, which is a tool that simulates patient interaction. This is especially helpful given that the program is distance learning friendly.
The FNP Degree Versus a PA Degree in Illinois
Today, those who wish to expand their role in the healthcare field have many different avenues by which they can do so. While all of these options can be quite overwhelming, the key to deciding which profession is right for you comes down to knowing yourself and how you see yourself contributing to the field.
For example, people considering becoming FNPs sometimes also consider becoming Physician Assistants (PAs). In a state like Illinois, both FNPs and PAs can practice without a written collaborative agreement, so the difference between these two professions may be less obvious, but the distinction is quite pertinent.
FNPs are generally more patient-centered and are very concerned with patient outcomes. PAs, on the other hand, are more disease-focused. Thus, their goal tends to be that of identifying a disease, finding a cure, and getting patients back to their ‘normal’ life. In contrast, FNPs tend to have more long-term relationships with their patients.