Acute Care DNP: Programs & Salary

If you are looking for a career working with people who require sudden and brief care, you may want to become a nurse practitioner in acute care with a DNP degree. In this article, we'll look at the salary for acute care and program courses.

View popular schools

Acute care is the branch of nursing that specifically looks at the urgent care for those with sudden severe injuries and short-term illnesses. If you are interested in becoming an acute care nurse practitioner (NP) or just earning a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree in acute care, consider the article's information below.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Agriculture
  • Architecture
  • Biological and Biomedical Sciences
  • Business
  • Communications and Journalism
  • Computer Sciences
  • Culinary Arts and Personal Services
  • Education
  • Engineering
  • Legal
  • Liberal Arts and Humanities
  • Mechanic and Repair Technologies
  • Medical and Health Professions
  • Physical Sciences
  • Psychology
  • Transportation and Distribution
  • Visual and Performing Arts

DNP Acute Care Program

It's important to note that universities tend to concentrate programs on a specific demographic: geriatrics or pediatrics. Depending on the college you attend, you will be required to hold at least a bachelor's degree (though a master's may be necessary) and may be required to already be a licensed registered nurse (RN). So, depending on which program you select -- acute care, acute care geriatrics, or acute care pediatrics -- your core courses may vary. Specifically, if you study gerontology or pediatrics, your concentration courses will focus on the illnesses and injuries more common to their current development.

Evidence-Based Practice

This course may be broken down into more specialized topics, depending on the university. With an evidence-based practice course, you'll do a lot of research and learn how to build the questions you're seeking answers to. You'll use articles, journals, statistics, and other relevant data to find out how to improve patient care using the information you find. You'll also learn other research methods and ways to interpret the results and data you find.

Health Promotion

In this course, you'll look at health prevention and risk reduction. Along with health education and assessment, you'll look at real-world examples of community health. You may look at your own community, assessing its health education and the need for health programs. Most importantly, you'll look at the disparities between populations and help fight illness and injury while focusing on those diverse populations.

Advanced Pathophysiology

Though you may have already taken a pathophysiology or physiology course, this will typically be the advanced course. Here, you'll look at the mechanics of disease and epidemiology. You'll look at wellness across the lifespan and how abnormalities can be recognized in the body's systems. You'll also study how pathophysiology theories can help in the prevention of future diseases.

Acute Care Theory

Depending on the college and program, this course may be geared toward a specific population. This may also be completed as a clinical, but the theory aspect will put you in the classroom to evaluate management plans of care, as well as ways to identify symptoms. You may look at case studies for practice or spend your time learning professional patient care in an urgent, critical, or emergency setting. You may also learn how to decide when referrals should be given and to understand your own limitations in critical care.

Advance Pharmacology

Building on basic pharmacology knowledge that you already have, you'll study more about the way medications react within the body. You'll study various areas of pharmacology, including pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and pharmacogenomics. You'll look mostly at prescribed medications and study the different classifications and uses for each. Depending on the college, you may study cultural implications and drug therapy.

Leadership in Healthcare

With a doctoral program, you'll want to study leadership and management strategies in healthcare. You'll look at organizational theory, operational processes, and managerial roles. You'll study the ethics and responsibilities of leaders, as well as how to improve your healthcare facility and patient care. You'll learn how to manage teams of workers and how to act as a leader to them for the betterment of the facility. Some time may be spent on economics of healthcare.

DNP Acute Care Salary

Acute care nurse practitioners will earn different salaries depending on the facility and state in which they work. You will find that the average salary for DNP holders as of 2018 was $100,000, according to PayScale. Though this is the average for DNP holders, it's important to remember that working in a specialization, like acute care, may lead to a higher salary. For instance, though PayScale states the average acute care NP earns about $98,116, Glassdoor stated that the average salary for 2018 was $120,955. So, the range can vary quite a bit depending on experience, location, and current need.

Studying acute care at the doctoral level can lead to a very specialized position as an NP, teacher, or leader. When studying acute care, you'll likely focus your studies on gerontology or pediatric care. Though these two are not the only ones offered, they are most common in universities. Earning your DNP degree will increase your salary, but depending on the state and area you wish to work as an NP, your salary will vary.

Next: View Schools

What is your highest level of education?

Some College
Complete your degree or find the graduate program that's right for you.
High School Diploma
Explore schools that offer bachelor and associate degrees.
Still in High School
Earn your diploma or GED. Plan your undergraduate education.

Schools you may like:

Popular Schools

The listings below may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users.

  • What is your highest level of education?

    • Master of Science in Nursing - Doctor of Nursing Practice Path, Executive Leader Specialization
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice
    • Master of Science in Nursing - Doctor of Nursing Practice Path
    • Master of Science in Legal Studies
    • MS in Psychology
    • MBA
    • Master of Public Health
    • MBA - Human Resources
    • MBA - Health Care Management
    • BS in Liberal Studies
    • BS in Business Administration
    • Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Investment Career Focus Area
    • BS in Liberal Studies Leadership
    • BS in Nutrition Science
    • BSFIN in Accelerated MS Finance
    • AAS in Business Administration - Business
    • AAS in Legal Support and Services
    • AAS in Business Administration
    • AAS in Business Administration - Food & Hotel Management
    • AAS in Business Admin-Office Management
    • AAS in Criminal Justice
    • Medical Office Administration Certificate
    • Human Services Certificates in Child and Family Services
    • Pathway to Paralegal Postbaccalaureate Certificate
    • Medical Billing and Coding Certificate
    • Family Nurse Practitioner Graduate Certificate
    • Executive Leader Graduate Certificate

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • MA in Communication
    • Master of Liberal Arts
    • MA in Science Writing
    • MS in Applied Economics
    • MS in Geographic Information Systems
    • MS in Bioinformatics

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Doctor of Business Administration - Management
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
    • EdD in Organizational Leadership - Health Care Administration
    • EdD in Organizational Leadership - Special Education
    • Ph.D. in General Psychology - Cognition and Instruction
    • Ph.D. in General Psychology - Industrial and Organizational Psychology
    • M.S. Psychology with an Emphasis in Gerontology
    • M.S. in Psychology with an Emphasis in Human Factors
    • MA in Curriculum and Instruction
    • MS in Criminal Justice: Legal Studies
    • MS in Psychology: General Psychology
    • M.A. in Communication with an Emphasis in Education
    • Bachelor of Science in Business for Secondary Education
    • BS in Psychology
    • B.S. in Psychology with an Emphasis in Performance and Sports Psychology
    • Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education
    • BS in Early Childhood
    • BS in Elementary Education / Special Education (Dual Major)

    What is your highest level of education?

    • Transitional Doctorate of Physical Therapy
    • MBA in Health Care Management
    • MBA in Finance/Accounting
    • MBA in General
    • MS in Healthcare Administration
    • MA in Financial Crime and Compliance Management
    • MS in Data Science: Social Science Analytics
    • BS in Cybersecurity - Network Forensics and Intrusion Investigation
    • RN to BSN
    • BS in Cybersecurity - Cybercrime and Fraud Investigation
    • BS in Cybersecurity - Information Assurance
    • Bachelor of Science in Fraud and Financial Crime Investigation
    • BS in Fraud and Financial Crime Investigation - Financial Investigation

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Master of Science in Finance
    • Masters of Professional Studies in Technology Management
    • Master of Professional Studies in Real Estate

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Master of Business Administration with a General Business Specialization
    • Master of Business Administration - Entrepreneurship and Family Enterprise Concentration
    • Master of Business Administration - Finance Concentration
    • Master of Business Administration - Human Resource Management Concentration
    • Master of Business Administration - Hospitality and Casino Management Concentration
    • Master of Business Administration - International Business Concentration

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Ed. D. in Organizational Leadership
    • Ed. D. in Organizational Leadership - Higher Education Track
    • EdD Organizational Leadership - Digital Learning Track
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice
    • EdD Organizational Leadership
    • Doctor of Nursing Practice - Advanced Practice Nurse
    • MBA - Healthcare Administration
    • MBA
    • MBA - Marketing
    • Master of Science in Management
    • Master of Science in Management - Healthcare Administration
    • Master of Science in Management - International Business

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • Doctor of Strategic Leadership - Healthcare Leadership
    • Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership
    • Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership - Ecclesial Leadership
    • Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership - Entrepreneurial Leadership
    • Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership - Individualized
    • Doctor of Strategic Leadership - Global Consulting
    • Master of Arts in Communication
    • Master of Arts in Communication - Political Communication
    • Master of Arts in Communication - Strategic Communication
    • Master of Arts in Government - Political Communication
    • Master of Arts in Journalism
    • Master of Arts in Law - Business
    • Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies
    • Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies - Rhetoric and Public Culture
    • Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies - Strategic Communication
    • Bachelor of Arts in English - Communication
    • Bachelor of Arts in Leadership Studies - Criminal Justice
    • Bachelor of Science in Business

    What is your highest level of education completed?

    • MSHS Medical Laboratory Sciences
    • MSHS in Immunohematology and Biotechnology
    • MSHS in Molecular Diagnostic Sciences
    • MSHS in Translational Microbiology
    • MA in Education and Human Development in Secondary Special Education and Transition Services
    • MA in Education and Human Development in Special Education for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners
    • BSHS in Clinical Operations and Healthcare Management
    • BSHS in Medical Laboratory Sciences
    • BSHS in Biomedical Informatics

    What is your highest level of education?

Find your perfect school

What is your highest level of education?