To date, a large number of doctorate of nursing practice (DNP) degrees have been earned by nurse practitioners (NPs) with experience as master’s prepared clinicians. Among those of us who find ourselves in this situation, the question of whether that DNP has affected our patient care has arisen. In my own case, as a graduate of a DNP program designed specifically for experienced master’s prepared nurses, I like to think that my DNP program changed my thinking, my approach to problems, and maybe even to life generally. That is what doctoral degrees are supposed to do—orient us toward knowledge synthesis and development and, in the case of nursing, to develop and apply theoretical contexts that help us to understand our work and deliver care. Do those same contexts apply to our clinical knowledge and approach to our patients?
Disclaimer: The viewpoint expressed in this article is the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the viewpoint of the owners or employees at Healthcare Staffing Innovations, LLC.