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Acute Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner DNP

Our Acute Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner DNP program prepares you as a population expert in caring for children with critical, complex illness or injury. 

The AC PNP stabilizes patients, prevents complications, restores and maintains maximum health, and provides palliative and end-of-life care. 

Through this program, you are prepared to provide advanced, comprehensive, holistic, family-centered care.  

Patients may be characterized as physiologically unstable, experiencing life-threatening illness or injury, medically fragile, technologically dependent or vulnerable to complications. 

In addition, you will be prepared to sit for the CPNP-AC exam of the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board. 

Our program has been ranked first in the nation by U.S. News & World Report in each of the last two years it has ranked this category.

View the curriculum

Fast Facts: Acute Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (AC PNP) DNP
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Program Type:
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Cohort 2 to 3 2/3 Years

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Per Credit Hour
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Class Size:

Our Approach

You learn from nationally known faculty from across the country who are experienced in the care of ill and injured children.  

We offer tracks for both bachelor’s and master’s-prepared nurses (APRNs and non-APRNs). 

Program Length and Location

Our program is based on cohorts and is offered part-time. It takes 3 2/3 years to complete for students with a bachelor’s degree. 

Students with a master’s generally complete the program in two to three years. Your program length may vary depending on a gap analysis. 

Most coursework takes place online. Distance learning is not an option for residents of some states.  

Contact the program director if you live outside the Chicago metro area. 

A clinical practicum is required. You will also make periodic campus visits: 

  • One-day new-student orientation (attendance is optional). 
    • Two day visit for the Doctor of Nursing Practice proposal presentation.  
  • One-week visit with each pediatric acute care management course (two). 
  • Two-day visit in final term for Doctor of Nursing Practice final presentation. 



After program completion, you are eligible for the following: 

  • Certification as a certified pediatric nurse practitioner—acute care (CPNP-AC) by the Pediatric Nursing Certification Board 
  • State licensure or certification where available

Program Tuition

At RUSH University, we know your education is a big investment. We want to make sure you have all the information to be able to make the best financial decisions for you and your family. 

Tuition for the Acute Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (AC PNP) DNP program is $1,344 per credit hour.

Learn about student financial aid options

Hear from Our Graduates
  • Since earning her DNP at RUSH, Kacee Logsdon, DNP, CPNP-AC is now a heart transplant nurse practitioner at Children’s Hospital Colorado in Aurora, Colorado. She credits the AC PNP program with preparing her for both direct patient care and quality improvement initiatives.

  • Entering the DNP program as a pediatric nurse practitioner with many years of experience, Jan Dudley, DNP, MHA, CPNP-AC/PC found a caring faculty who assigned clinical placements to match her clinical interests and professional development goals.

Acute Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (AC PNP) DNP Career Opportunities

Program graduates work with patients and their families within a continuum of care ranging from disease prevention to critical care. 

They work independently as providers, specialty service consultants, and as members of interprofessional teams in a variety of settings: 

  • Acute care home service 
  • Critical care 
  • Emergency care 
  • Inpatient unit 
  • Specialty clinic 
  • Specialty service 
  • Transport team 

Employment of nurse practitioners is expected to grow 40% from 2021-31. This is much faster than the average for other professions.

Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AC PNP) DNP Faculty
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Admissions Contact Information

Elizabeth Miranda 
Admissions Specialist
(312) 942-6986

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