Requirements of Becoming an FNP

Requirements of Becoming an FNP

If you’re considering a career in healthcare and want to make a significant impact on people’s lives, then becoming a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) might be just what you’re looking for.

FNPs provide primary care services to families and individuals and are highly valued members of the healthcare team. They have the skills and knowledge to diagnose and treat a range of conditions, manage chronic diseases, and promote overall health and wellness.

You’ll need to meet certain requirements before you can start practicing as an FNP. From education to licensing, this article has got it all covered. So, if you’re ready to take the first step towards a rewarding career in healthcare, read on!

  1. Earn a BSN and Become a Registered Nurse

To become a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP), you need to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree and become a registered nurse (RN). A BSN program will provide you with the knowledge and skills needed to practice as an RN. You’ll learn all about nursing and patient care, from anatomy and physiology to pharmacology and hands-on clinical experience.

Now that you’ve got your BSN degree, it’s time to take the next step and become a registered nurse (RN). You have to pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to receive your RN license and move closer to your goal of becoming an FNP.

  1. Earn a Master of Science in Nursing

To become an FNP, you’ll need to earn a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree, or higher, with a focus on FNP. You can even consider an MSN FNP online program if you’re looking for ultimate flexibility.

An MSN FNP online program will equip you with the knowledge and skills you need to provide top-notch primary care services to families and individuals. Plus, with an online degree, you’ll have the flexibility to continue working as a nurse while you study.

With the advancement of technology, many MSN programs offer a variety of specialties to choose from, allowing you to tailor your education to your interests and career goals.

  1. Pass the National FNP Certification Exam

Now that you’ve come this far, it’s time to take the next step toward becoming a Family Nurse Practitioner. To do so, you’ll need to become certified by passing the national FNP certification exam. This exam is offered by either the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) or the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP).

The exam tests your knowledge and skills in providing patient care, just like the NCLEX-RN. But this time, it’s specifically focused on FNPs. Once you pass, you’ll receive your FNP certification and be another step closer to practicing as a nurse practitioner.

  1. Apply for State Licensure

After you’ve passed the national FNP certification exam and become a certified Family Nurse Practitioner, the next step is to apply for state licensure.

State licensure is required to practice as an FNP within a specific state. It ensures that you meet the standards set by the state board of nursing and that you’re qualified to provide safe and effective care to patients.

The process of applying for state licensure varies by state, so it’s important to research the requirements in the state where you wish to practice. But once you receive your license, you’ll officially be a licensed Family Nurse Practitioner, ready to provide top-notch patient care

  1. Obtain Your NPI and DEA Numbers

After you’ve become a licensed Family Nurse Practitioner, you’re ready to provide exceptional patient care. But there’s one more thing you’ll need to do before you can start practicing. You will have to obtain your National Provider Identification (NPI) and Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) numbers.

Your NPI number is a unique identifier assigned to you by the National Plan and Provider Enumeration System (NPPES). It’s used to identify you as a healthcare provider in transactions with healthcare systems and insurance companies.

Your DEA number, on the other hand, is a unique identifier assigned by the DEA. It allows you to prescribe controlled substances and is required by federal law. Obtaining both of these is important to have to start practicing as an FNP.

  1. Get a Job

Next, it’s time to put your education and experience to use by finding an FNP job that fits your interests and goals. There are many job opportunities available for FNPs, including primary care, specialty care, and inpatient and outpatient settings. You can work in private practice, clinics, or hospitals.

To find an FNP job, start by researching different types of practices and settings that interest you. Network with fellow FNPs, attend job fairs and conferences, and create a strong online presence. Be proactive and send out your resume and cover letter to potential employers, and be ready to ace any interviews that come your way.

With hard work and determination, you’ll find the perfect FNP job that allows you to use your skills and provide high-quality patient care.

  1. Maintain Your Family Nurse Practitioner Licenses

Once you’ve landed your dream job as a Family Nurse Practitioner, there’s still more work to do. In order to continue practicing as an FNP, it’s important to maintain both your nursing license and FNP certification.

Most states require you to renew your nursing license every 2-3 years, usually by completing continuing education units (CEUs) and paying a renewal fee. The requirements for CEUs vary by state.

Your FNP certification must also be renewed every 5-7 years by taking an exam or completing CEUs. The specific requirements for renewal vary depending on which certifying body you went through (ANCC or AANP).

By keeping up with license and certification renewals, you’ll ensure that you’re providing the best care possible to your patients and staying up to date with the latest developments in healthcare.


Becoming a Family Nurse Practitioner is a rewarding and fulfilling career path that requires a solid education, practical experience, and the successful completion of exams and certifications. The process may seem overwhelming at first, but with determination and hard work, you can become a skilled and knowledgeable healthcare provider.

Asheley Rice

I am a pop culture and social media expert. Aside from writing about the latest news health, I also enjoy pop culture and Yoga. I have BA in American Cultural Studies and currently enrolled in a Mass-Media MA program. I like to spend my spring breaks volunteering overseas.

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