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Difference Between Nurse and Nurse Practitioner

Nurse vs Nurse Practitioner

The health care industry deals with the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of diseases, mental and physical disorders, and injuries. It involves such health care professionals as doctors, therapists, caregivers, midwives, and nurses.

Nurses have both clinical and non-clinical functions in the health care industry. Together with other health care professionals, nurses are responsible for the treatment and recovery of patients in a variety of medical settings and in health maintenance. They can either have a two-year Associate’s degree or a four-year Bachelor’s degree. They also have to pass a national licensure examination before they can practice. Aside from hospitals, nurses are employed in schools, health centers, rehabilitation centers, hospices, and by private individuals. They are the health professionals who are in constant contact with the patients; caring for them, administering their treatment, assisting them in the management of their illnesses, understanding their ailments, and working together with family members to better understand and care for the patient.

Nurses are often knowledgeable about the different types of illnesses. In a hospital setting they can be found in emergency rooms, operating and delivery rooms, oncology and pediatric departments as well as many other medical fields. They can also specialize in medical areas that they are most interested in, or they can go on and get a Master’s degree or a doctorate degree, the completion of which will make them nurse practitioners. They are required to pass a national board certification examination before they can become certified or licensed as nurse practitioners.The additional training that nurse practitioners have undergone make them eligible to perform several tasks that are only performed by doctors. They can diagnose and treat minor illnesses and injuries such as colds, flu, or minor cuts and bumps.

While most areas still require nurse practitioners to work under the supervision of doctors, in others they are allowed to work on their own. They can write medical prescriptions, run tests, and provide care for people who have maintenance medications such as patients with diabetes.
While nurses only have a limited range of responsibilities in the health care industry, nurse practitioners have broader and bigger roles in the medical profession. They can perform nursing tasks as well as some of the functions of doctors although with some limitations.


1.A nurse is a health care professional who is responsible for the treatment and care of patients and the dispensing of treatment while a nurse practitioner is a nurse who has undergone further training and education.
2.A nurse does not have a Master’s or doctorate degree while a nurse practitioner does.
3.A nurse practitioner can do some of the functions of a doctor like diagnosis and treatment of minor illnesses and prescribing medications while a nurse cannot.
4.Both a nurse and a nurse practitioner have to pass licensure examinations in order to be able to practice, but a nurse practitioner needs to pass several of these examinations while a nurse only has to pass one or two.

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