Doctor of Nursing sounds like an oxymoron. Holders of a DNP (The word Practice follows Doctor and Nursing in the full title) can practice specialized medicine. Let us look at three specialties open to DNPs.


The age range of patients seen by a Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (PNP DNP) is infancy to age 16. Some guidelines call for pediatric care up until age 21. Anyone considering becoming a PNP DNP should be good with children; no kidding.

Working in pediatrics requires a talent for comforting and reassuring concerned parents. The skills that a PNP is allowed to practice depends on the state they practice in. Generally, a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner conducts routine exams, orders diagnostic tests, and prescribes treatments.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that by 2022, the demand for PNPs will increase 34%. A PNP DNP can potentially earn $85,000 a year. The shortage of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners guarantees greater job security.

Mental Health

If you want a lot of letters after your name Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP DNP) is the job for you. PMHNPs work with mental health patients. Don’t you love it when someone explains something self-explanatory? One duty of a PMHNP includes determining the mental health status of a patient.

A Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner treats patients with medications and psychotherapy. Being a PMHNP places you in a position to influence mental health treatment protocols. PMHNPs also have a voice in the development of healthcare reforms.

A variety of workplace options are open to a PMHNP. They practice in private and state-run psychiatric hospitals. PMHNPs treat patients in houses of correction, schools and patients’ homes. There is also the option of opening an independent practice. Several variables determine a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner’s salary, but there is the potential to make almost $100,000 per year.

Family Practice

Perhaps the most diverse specialty for a Doctor of Nursing is a Family Nurse Practitioner or FNPDNP. After this article is sure to read “Careers in Creating Medical Abbreviations”. An FNPDNP treats patients of all ages.

Being an FNP is as close as you can come to be a physician without graduating from medical school. Some states require nurse practitioners to work under the supervision of an MD. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for FNPs is outpacing the demand for all other nursing specialties. The demand for FNPs is so high some practices will pay for qualified employees to become an FNP.

Family Nurse Practitioners set their hours. FNPs can work in hospitals, medical practices or in some states maintain a private practice. In 2019 the average rate of pay for an FNP was $52.90 per hour.

For DNPs the fastest-growing specialties are mental health, family practice, and pediatrics. Being an FNP is close to being a doctor. The demand for Pediatric Nurse Practitioners is projected to grow 34% over the next two years. DNPs can also specialize in women’s’ health and geriatrics.