What Specialties Are Available for Nurse Practitioners?

Nurse Practitioners can specialize in several nursing fields.

The education, job, roles, and salary vary from field to field.

Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (ACNP)

ACNP can work in emergency rooms, intensive care units, operating rooms, or urgent care duties.

Some of the responsibilities of an ACNP include taking rounds on hospitalized patients and managing their stay.

ACNPs can also assist during various surgeries.

Their job is to insert suture or perform lumbar punctures and insert central lines.

However, ACNP is also allowed to order diagnostic tests and to manage or create a treatment plan according to the test results.

ACNP also write orders for ancillary staff in their work settings.

Adult Nurse Practitioner (ANP)

As the name suggests, ANP is a nurse specialized in caring for adult patients.

These nurses can work in various clinics and departments.

Their most common work setting is facilities for providing long-term care to aged people.

They take care of physicals routine and schedule preventive diagnostic tests.

However, ANPs also treat and manage chronic conditions.

Another aspect of their work is communication with patients and families and education on preventive health.

Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner (A-GNP)

A-GNP is a nurse who specializes in providing care for the aged population.

These nurses work in specialty departments, clinics, or long-term care facilities.

Among other regular nursing duties, A-GNP performs routine physicals and provide treatment to age-related diagnosis.

An important aspect of A-GNP duties is taking care of patients diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and memory care

Also, A-GNPs work with families to educate them about available resources for elderly patients.

Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)

FNP specialize in gynecological, adult, and pediatric primary care.

These nurses usually work in primary care work settings or hospitals.

Sometimes, they work in long-term care facilities.

Their primary duty is proving care to patients of all ages.

They perform tests on acute complaints and physical routines.

FNPs provide preventive health maintenance and take care of patients with chronic conditions.

FNPs are allowed to order any diagnostic tests or procedures.

Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (PNP)

A pediatric nurse practitioner is a nurse who specializes in taking care of patients from their birth to the young adult age.

PNPs can be found in various work settings, such as hospitals and clinics.

Their duties include routine, school, or sports physicals and activities related to preventive health such as managing vaccinations.

They educate and address common teen issues such as bullying, peer pressure, birth control, sexuality, and STDs.

PNP can identify development challenges and refer to any physician in case of pediatric-related conditions.

Their scope of practice is wide and includes a variety of activities related to child development.

Adult Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP)

Nurses who choose to educate themself in the field of psychiatric/mental health conditions including depression, schizophrenia, and anxiety are PMHNP.

There are a lot of facilities in which PMHNP can work, including hospitals, acute care psychiatric hospitals, community clinics, outpatient clinics, etc.

PMHNPs provide counseling for patients with mental health disorders and conditions.

Part of their work is to provide resources for families.

Nurses specialized in adult psychiatric can start and manage patients who take psychiatric medications and monitor the treatment process.

PMHNPs can implement alternative treatments if the standard treatments as effective.

For example, they can implement cognitive behavioral therapy.

Family Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) and WHNP

You can also choose to specialize in family psychiatric, both children and adults.

The primary work settings of PMHNP are hospitals.

If you specialize in the care of women’s health, you will become a Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner (WHNP).

WHNPs work in delivery rooms, or emergency rooms.

They are in charge of routine women tests such as PAP smear, pelvic and vaginal exams, mammograms, etc.

WHNPs can identify and treat pelvic inflammatory disease, bacterial vaginosis, and STDs.

They can provide and prescribe birth control.

Also, they can work on interbirth control placement – management, and removals.

Sometimes, they perform cervical biopsies and colposcopy.

WHNPS provide prenatal and postpartum care as well.


Nurse practitioners can expand their focus further and educate on caring for a specific disease.

In that case, there are several additional specialties.

For example, oncology specialed nurses take care of patients with cancer, while nephrology nurses take care of patients with kidney diseases.

Orthopedic nurses deal with bone and joint injuries, cardiology nurses treat patients with heart-related issues and pulmonology nurses work with patients with lung diseases and breathing problems.

Lastly, dermatology nurses help patients with skin conditions.

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