Florida Atlantic University’s Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing has launched a new “Dermatology Nurse Practitioner Post-graduate Certificate Program,” to provide nurse practitioners with the knowledge, skills and competencies needed for specialization in general dermatology to care for patients across the life span, it announces in a news release.

“Our new certificate program will prepare masters and doctoral nurse practitioners to acquire foundational core competencies in their population-focus areas.

“Most often, nurse practitioner educational preparation includes little dermatology education and training. Therefore, nurse practitioners who desire to specialize in dermatology are left to develop competencies through on-the-job training or in a rare fellowship program.”

— Susan Bulfin, DNP, ARNP, FNP-BC, program director, a professor and doctor of nursing practice (DNP) director of the practice teaching track in FAU’s Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing

Dermatology Specialty Knowledge

Nurse practitioners who complete the FAU Dermatology Nurse Practitioner Post-graduate Certificate Program will acquire the breadth and depth of dermatology specialty knowledge, skills and abilities that are essential for the development of entry-level competencies. Focus will be placed on advancing their scientific knowledge in areas such as immunology, dermatopathology and pharmacology.

In addition, sequential sessions will prepare nurse practitioners for the assessment, diagnosis, management and monitoring of patients with acute and chronic dermatologic conditions.

On-campus “hands-on” workshops will be held once a semester to develop skills required for skin exams, biopsies, cryotherapy and other common dermatological procedures. The oversight of clinical practicum hours to integrate specialty knowledge and skills will be conducted under the supervision of experienced, certified dermatology nurse practitioners and board-certified dermatologists, the release explains.

Curriculum Courses and Requirements

The curriculum comprises a three course series: dermatology essentials (40 hours); dermatology clinical I (40 hours); and dermatology clinical II (60 hours). Online didactic content (140 hours) will focus on dermatology knowledge and skills for acquisition of the nationally published Competencies for Dermatology Nurse Practitioners. 

A total of 480 clinical hours will be required, and students will be responsible for identifying and securing qualified clinical sites and preceptors. Program graduates will be encouraged to complete required clinical hours and apply for the national “Dermatology Certified Nurse Practitioner (DCNP) Examination.”

“Nurse practitioners fill a critical role in the delivery of healthcare, especially as our nation faces physician shortages in primary care and other specialties, including a projected inadequate supply of dermatologists to meet the demand for service.

“The Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing is at the forefront of providing innovative programs and services to address these gaps. Our latest Dermatology Post-graduate Certificate Program will equip advanced-practice nurses with the tools required to provide high-quality, holistic care for their patients with dermatological conditions.”

— Safiya George, PhD, dean of FAU’s Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing

Admission Criteria

Criteria for admission into the program requires a minimum MSN GPA of 3.0; participants must be a licensed ARNP in good standing with post master’s ANCC or AANP certification; a master’s nurse practitioner student from accredited family, adult or pediatric concentrations, enrolled within the last semester before graduation; and two letters of recommendation from healthcare colleagues or supervisors.

The lead program faculty member is Margaret Bobonich, DNP, FNP-C, DCNP, FAANP, a nationally recognized expert in dermatology care, author and instructor.   

The three series program begins on January 9, 2021 and runs through December 4, 2021. The application deadline is December 15. For more information, call 561-297-1109, email [email protected] or visit https://nursing.fau.edu/derm.

[Source: Florida Atlantic University]