A nurse practitioner (NP) is a healthcare provider who practices a mix of nursing and medicine, often in collaboration with a doctor. An NP is a registered nurse (RN) with advanced education, training and skills in preventive, diagnostic and treatment services. While NPs can work in any area of medicine, they often work in pediatrics, geriatrics, family medicine, and internal medicine.
NPs practice in different ways in different states, settings and specialties. They work in doctor’s offices, schools, clinics, hospitals, and community health settings. Some NPs run their own private practices, but many work as part of a group practice or a hospital or clinic healthcare team. Like all healthcare providers, NPs consult with doctors and other providers as appropriate.
In general, an NP:
Evaluates a patient’s medical history and educates the patient about wellness and disease prevention
Provides routine and preventive healthcare services including immunizations, sports and school physicals, pelvic exams, birth control counseling, and sexually transmitted disease (STD) screenings
Orders and interprets laboratory and imaging tests and prescribes medications
Diagnoses and treats acute diseases and conditions including infections and injuries
Screens, treats and monitors a range of chronic health conditions, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, thyroid disease, heart disease, and depression
Screens for cancer including Pap tests and skin and thyroid exams
Performs minor procedures including removing foreign objects and stitching cuts
Works closely with doctors and other healthcare providers to ensure patients receive optimal, seamless healthcare
NPs may also be known by the following names: nurse practitioner-certified (NP-C) and advanced practice registered nurse (APRN).
There are 9493 specialists practicing Nursing (Nurse Practitioner) in Massachusetts with an overall average rating of 4.0 stars. There are 52 hospitals in Massachusetts with affiliated Nursing (Nurse Practitioner) specialists, including Lawrence Memorial Hospital of Medford, MelroseWakefield Hospital and Cooley Dickinson Hospital.