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The demand for nurse practitioners, including family nurse practitioners (FNPs), is estimated to grow quickly — 31 percent between 2014 and 2024.1 This means there’s an immediate need for these advanced nursing professionals to care for an expansive and aging population. Driven in part by policy changes and expectations, health care organizations are creating more FNP jobs to balance the access to quality care for a reasonable cost. In fact, FNPs account for 50 percent of all nurse practitioners in the country.2


The FNP Job Description

FNPs take charge of their patients’ health care needs, acting as a primary care provider from infancy through the end of life. In doing so, they treat and prevent a variety of common conditions and illnesses. Advanced training also qualifies them for positions in management, research, education, and policy making.

As autonomous providers, or in collaboration with other health care professionals, key responsibilities in the FNP job description include your qualifications to:

  • Conduct physical examinations
  • Diagnose diseases and injuries
  • Devise long-term health care plans


$101,260  vs. $83,002

The annual wage for nurse practitioners is significantly higher than that of all MSN-prepared nurses.


FNP Careers Snapshot

Family nurse practitioners are employed in a wide variety of care settings, allowing for maximum flexibility in your FNP career. The areas with the highest levels of employment are:

  • Physicians’ offices
  • Hospitals
  • Outpatient clinics
  • Colleges, universities and professional schools
  • Offices of other health practitioners


Top Three Highest-Paying Settings for FNPs

The level of care FNPs provide to patients is complex in comparison to other master-level-prepared nurses, and is reflected in their annual salaries. If you’re interested in a career in personal care services, a specialty hospital, or professional organization, you’ll earn even more than the average salary of $101,260.3

IndustryAnnual mean wage
Personal care services (such as home health care)$135,290
Specialty hospitals (except psychiatric and substance abuse)$117,690
Business, professional, labor, political, and similar organizations$108,060

Find out more about the online FNP specialization of the Master of Science in Nursing at Sacred Heart University, a leader among online graduate nursing programs. Call us at 877-791-7181 to speak to an admissions team member or request more information now.



1 Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/nurse-anesthetists-nurse-midwives-and-nurse-practitioners.htm (visited 03/28/17).

2 http://nursejournal.org/family-practice/role-scope-of-practice-of-a-family-nurse-practitioner/.

3 Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, Nurse Practitioners, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes291171.htm, visited 03/28/17.