Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Online Programs – The Future of Healthcare

The healthcare industry is currently experiencing rapid advancements and changes. While many factors may affect the future of our healthcare system, trends indicate that value-based care models and technology will be significant drivers.

Future physicians will rely on technology to help them navigate and organize an exponentially growing amount of data. It will mean a less stressful experience for patients.


Online acute care nurse practitioner online programs allow students to earn their degrees from a distance, making it easier for working nurses and other professionals with family or work obligations to participate in a top-notch nursing program. Coursework is generally conducted through the university’s learning management system, with some programs offering classes requiring students to be online at a set time, called synchronous. In contrast, others offer on-demand lectures that can be watched at any time, asynchronous.

Pace University’s BSN-to-DNP program is highly flexible and allows for completing most coursework online, with only three one-week immersions required on campus. The program also offers a choice of two concentrations: adult gerontology acute care or pediatric acute care. Both options give graduates the credentials they need to work in urgent and emergency care settings, where they can help patients manage their immediate healthcare needs.


Acute care nurse practitioner online programs allow students to pursue their degree from the comfort of home. Students with busy schedules can fit in coursework around work, family, and other commitments. Some online NP programs offer entirely asynchronous courses, but others hold classes on a set schedule. Some also require students to attend campus-based intensives for hands-on clinical skills training, such as central line insertion.

The university’s BSN-to-DNP acute care nurse practitioner program offers ample simulation learning in its state-of-the-art labs. This practical experience is critical to advancing nurses into advanced practice and helps prepare them for clinical placements in acute care settings.

Nurses who graduate from accredited acute care nurse practitioner online programs are qualified to treat patients with severe injuries or illnesses. They may work in emergency rooms, critical care units, or skilled nursing facilities, and some specialize in adult-gerontology or pediatric acute care.


Accredited online acute care nurse practitioner programs are available in various subject areas, from adult gerontology to Pediatrics. Each program teaches you the skills to diagnose and treat critically ill patients, stabilize their condition, and help them heal quickly.

Students in online APRN programs take core graduate nursing courses and additional acute care coursework, often with the assistance of an expert faculty mentor. Depending on the degree level you pursue, you might also participate in clinical and hands-on simulation experiences or attend on-campus intensives to practice skills like central line insertion.

Prospective students who wish to enroll in this program must have a registered nursing license and a bachelor’s degree. Some APRN programs are designed for BSN or MSN graduates, but others accept applicants with an ASN or ADN. Many specialized APRN programs require candidates to complete extensive clinical experience, including supervised work in specific healthcare settings. In OHSU’s AGACNP program, for example, students engage in hybrid immersion, completing 550 precepted clinical hours on several interprofessional teams.

Career Opportunities

Many registered nurses aspire to advance their careers with nurse practitioner degrees. Becoming an acute care nurse practitioner is a rewarding, challenging, and fulfilling career choice that allows nurses to be more independent from physicians and help patients with various health conditions.

Whether you’re already working as a registered nurse and want to boost your earning potential or are considering returning to school, online ACNP programs make it possible to continue working while earning your degree. You’ll still have to commit to meeting a program’s requirements, such as participating in live-streamed classes or viewing prerecorded lectures, but you may be able to do so at your own pace.

Many online ACNP programs also offer clinical placements that let students put their classroom skills to work at local hospitals and medical centers. Acute care nurse practitioners must complete at least 500 clinical hours, making it an excellent opportunity for nurses to gain hands-on experience and meet the BLS’s requirements.