Arizona Nurse Practitioner Certification
In the state of Arizona, as with many other states, you must be a licensed RN before you can pursue your NP certification. Once you are an RN, you can begin your path to becoming an NP by enrolling in an advanced degree program—earning either a master’s or doctorate degree in a specialized advanced nursing field. You can attend one of five schools in the state that offer NP programs: Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University, University of Arizona, Grand Canyon University, and University of Phoenix. Or, you can choose to attend an online university, which offers the flexibility and comfort of studying from home. Accredited online schools include: University of Cincinnati, Philadelphia University, Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing, Liberty University, South University, and Graceland University.
At any of these schools, you may study courses such as diagnosis and clinical management of health and illness, pathophysiology, or pharmacology. You must also participate in clinical practice throughout much of the course of your program. To prove yourself competent as a NP, the Arizona Board of Nursing requires that you demonstrate the ability to admit patients to a medical facility, examine patients, perform and interpret diagnostic tests, diagnose patients, create treatment plans, and prescribe and dispense medications.
After you have earned your advanced degree, you are eligible to take a national certification exam in your specialized field. Once you successfully pass this exam, you are qualified to become a certified Arizona NP. Your certification request must be submitted within 5 years of either obtaining your degree or practicing in your field of specialization. If you wish, you also can apply for a DEA license, which will allow you to dispense controlled substances.
As an NP in Arizona NPs, you may primary care in ambulatory, acute, and long-term care settings. You may practice as a primary provider in various areas, such as family practice, pediatrics, internal medicine, geriatrics, and obstetrics/gynecology (Ob/Gyn) or women’s health. NPs diagnose patients and treat those who have already been diagnosed, providing a range of care from the outset of illness to comprehensive care. NPs take medical histories, provide physical exams, order diagnostic tests and procedures, interpret diagnostic tests, treat patients, and establish management plans for caring for patients with acute and chronic illness.
The average salary for an Arizona NP is $96,000 per year. Nurse practitioners in larger cities, such as Flagstaff, generally make higher salaries. For more information about obtaining NP certification in Arizona, visit the Arizona Nurse Practitioner Council website at http://www.arizonanp.com/.
Last Updated: 05/19/2014