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DNP: Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Clinical Nurse Specialist Program Information
About Rush University

The Role of the Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Clinical Nurse Specialist

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) in the adult-gerontology acute care clinical nurse specialist  program prepares the graduate to function as change agent, collaborator, clinical leader, educator, case manager and patient advocate. The clinical nurse specialist role is built around four dimensions: clinical expertise, consultation, education and research. The program prepares the critical care CNS to work with acute care populations across the adult lifespan in a variety of in-patient settings.

The changing demands of the nation's complex health care environment require that nurses serving in specialty positions have the highest level of scientific knowledge and practice expertise possible. The BSN/MSN - DNP with specialty certification curriculum builds on traditional clinical master's programs by providing additional education in evidence-based practice, quality improvement, systems leadership and other content areas that will lead to improved clinical outcomes in complex systems.

Important Program Information
  • Program of Study-- A list of all required courses and number of credits.

On-Campus and Online Information Sessions available! It is highly recommended to attend one of these sessions if you would like to learn more about the program from faculty and staff.

Program Highlights and Opportunities

  • Rush University College of Nursing DNP programs are available to both bachelor's and master's prepared students wishing to attain the Doctor of Nursing Practice degree. Coursework is available in both on-campus and online formats.
  • Individualized clinical practica are precepted by expert health care practitioners.
  • Acute Care CNSs work in many setting which include critical care units, inpatient units, and specialty practices such as neurosurgery, cardiology, hematology, trauma, orthopedics. They practice in academic medical centers, community hospital settings, subacute settings and inpatient settings.
  • In our current climate of quality and safety, the Acute Care CNS role is highly recognized for its contributions to improving patient outcomes. 

Certification and Accreditation

Completion of the adult-gerontology acute care clinical nurse specialist program provides eligibility for certification as an acute care clinical nurse specialist by the American Association of Acute Care Nurses and for state licensure/certification where available. 


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