Competences of a DNP prepared nurse

Competences of a DNP prepared nurse


Major reforms have been undertaken on US Healthcare in an attempt to increase its standards in terms of quality of care. This is done in the need to much some of efficient healthcare system as evident in Italy. Some of these reforms include the Affordable Care Act, Medicare, Medicaid but most notably the introduction of the Doctor for Nursing Practice (DNP) degree for nursing practitioners. The DNP degree is a doctoral program designed for nurses – especially advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) – seeking a terminal degree in nursing and offers an alternative to the existing research based doctoral programs (Michigan Health Council, 2016). This paper analyses the various ways that a DNP prepared nurse can contribute to the improvement of the US healthcare system. In addition I will describe two of my personal professional experiences with health policy, law and ethics.

Competences of a DNP prepared nurse

This non-research clinical doctorate for nurses in aimed at creating expert practitioners who are also conversant with the clinical faculty. This doctorate program is expected to, among other things expand the nurses’ knowledge underlying the practice, given the increased complexity of patient care and very high expected quality of patient care and safety in US (AACN, 2016). Shortage of nurses in the US, demands that the nursing education programs prepare leaders in practitioners who can design and assess care.

Transition of nursing from the traditional master’s degree for those seeking a terminal nursing degree to DNP is a move in the direction of other healthcare professions (Smolowitz, Honig, & Reinisch, 2010). The other doctorate programs for healthcare professions in the US include doctorates in Medicine (MD), Dentistry (DDS), Pharmacy (PharmD), Psychology (PsyD), Physical Therapy (DPT) and Audiology (AudD). These doctorate degrees are developed to improve the healthcare standards in the US, which necessitated a similar program for nurses for the same purpose.

The DNP builds on the traditional master’s programs that prepared nurses especially APRN’s like Clinical Nurse Specialists, Nursing Practitioners and Certified Nurse-Midwives among others (Michigan Health Council, 2016). The DNP degree, unlike the existing research based doctoral programs for nurses, prepares them to fully implement the new and versatile sciences developed by nurse researchers at all levels of education including PhD, DNSc and even the research focused nursing doctorates.

Personal experiences

A case of the security of medical, genetic information collected from a patient and shared for medical purposes using the Electronic Health Register (EHR). The patient claimed that their employer got access to such information without consent, which is unethical despite the expected privacy of information agreement with the hospital (uOttawa, 2016). It was discovered that the employer is in the Healthcare industry and as such could access such information but not use it for non-medical purposes. In another case an elderly patient under the Long term stay in hospital program due to old age diseases contracted a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) while under the hospital care (uOttawa, 2016). This resulted in litigation against the hospital from the patient’s relations for negligence. Additionally, other bad experiences have also been evident. 


The US Healthcare system is one of the most advanced and progressive systems globally, which in turn creates increasing demands and expectations especially from practitioners in the industry (AACN, 2016). DNP-prepared nurses are better equipped with information and practical abilities to handle the modern healthcare demands and expectations compared to their traditional masters counter parts. This is explained by higher salaries for DNP-prepared nurses over the rest by $8,576 in 2011. Policies and Regulations on emerging ethical issues with the rapidly changing healthcare environment, is necessary (uOttawa, 2016). This would help in addressing numerous challenges affecting the profession such as gender issues.  


AACN. (2016). The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP). Retrieved on 13th January 2017 from,

Michigan Health Council. (2016). What does a “Doctor of Nursing Practice” Mean to You? Retrieved on 13th January 2017 from,

Smolowitz, J., Honig, J., & Reinisch, C. (2010). Writing DNP clinical case narratives: Demonstrating and evaluating competency in comprehensive care. New York, NY: Springer Pub. Co.

uOttawa. (2016). Center for Health Law, Policy and Ethics. Retrieved on 13th January 2017 from,


" Get A Perfect Paper Written From Scratch And Delivered Within Your Deadline By Our Professional Writers

Get started
1 reply

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] is definitely a noble profession that requires firm commitment because of numerous competences it afford practitioners. We are aware of the difficulty that nursing students encounter as they manage practical studies […]

Comments are closed.