Nurse Practitioner Career Specializations Guide - 2022

Last Reviewed: February 21st, 2022

Medicine across the scope of human beings is a vast and highly complicated field. Diagnoses and treatments are many and constantly evolving. However, certain conditions, specific diagnoses and treatments can have many similarities across specific demographics. Having health care professionals focus on specific populations makes dealing with common ailments, diagnostic procedures and the latest treatment methodologies much more manageable feats.

What is a population foci?

A population foci, or population-focused competencies, is a demographic group for which a nurse practitioner can specialize in the care and treatment of.

What does it mean to specialize in a single population foci?

Specialization is specific knowledge that is layered upon a platform of core competency. Core competency for nurse practitioners include advanced physiology/pathophysiology (including general principles that apply throughout the lifespan), advanced health assessment of human systems, advanced assessment techniques, concepts and approaches, and advanced pharmacology.

Specialization begins after core competencies have been covered and the future nurse practitioner gains more in depth knowledge and skills around specific physiology, health assessments and pharmacology of a demographic group.

What are the main population foci groups?

Can you switch, or add, population foci?

Yes! However, you will be required to gain further education specific to the new population foci you wish to work with. Additionally, you will need to gain national certification and licensure from your state. The fastest way to learn how to do this is to contact a school offering advanced nursing programs.