DNP Admission Essay

DNP Admission Essay

During the year 2001, the IOM issued a new health framework for the twenty-first century that detailed the pervasive nature of service misuse and medical errors. The publication uncovered the gap that exists amid ideal patient care and the system’s reality. The report concluded that the burden of harm channeled by the collective effect of all the healthcare quality issues is staggering (Chism, 2016). As a result, the Institute of Medicine called upon professionals in the health care sector to modernize their respective roles. The IOM implored schools to train students on the three Ts: Teamwork, technology, and translation. The IOM emphasized the need to educate students on how to work as members of an interdisciplinary team, apply new technologies appropriately and safely, and translate the acquired knowledge into practice. Soon after that, the AACN responded by proposing a new path of education for nurses: The DNP (doctor of nursing practice) degree whose programs align directly with the recommendations of the IOM (Chism, 2016).

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The DNP is a terminal practice-centered degree accorded to nurses who want to attain the highest proficiency level in the provision of complex care or those seeking to influence the healthcare sector positively by performing roles that do not entail direct patient care. An individual with a DNP degree may work as an administrator, health policy specialist, nurse educator, public health advocate, and executive leader (Chism, 2016). The DNP degree establishes a high credibility level for nurses with the desire to transform evidence-based care into actual practice, better care systems, and evaluate the outcomes of patient groupings and communities. The Doctor of Nursing Practice prepares graduates to effect change in leadership and organizational policies and assume high-level responsibilities in health systems, policy-making departments, and academia (Chism, 2016).
Currently, MSN remains the lowest (minimum) educational qualification for advanced practice in nursing. However, I choose to look beyond the MSN in an attempt to address the increasing patient demands, secure senior-level leadership opportunities in nursing administration systems and clinical care and improve the outcomes and quality of care. Pursuing the DNP degree will equip me with the skills I need to advance my career, for example, leadership skills. The DNP program will provide me with skills that align with my aspiration of becoming a leader in the field of integrative health and healing. Implementing principles of contemporary leadership theory in practice and learning to analyze health policies will not only promote patient’s health and outcomes but change health policy itself. Secondly, the acquired competencies will enhance my capacity to utilize science-based theories to improve my understanding of the nature of healthcare delivery and health and assess the efficacy of interventions. The primary aim of the DNP is to align nursing science with analytical, organizational, psychosocial, and biophysical sciences (Chism, 2016). My ambition has always been caring for my patients, holistically. An integrative approach to health care will engage and empower patients to take part in various health care practices. The strategy will also improve my decision-making approaches by equipping me with insights about personalized care and integrative, evidence-based therapeutic approaches.
Thirdly, the acquired proficiencies will play a role in expanding my knowledge on various concepts learnt under the MSN program. The DNP curriculum expands on the MSN conceptions to provide an education that aims to improve one’s expertise in attaining clinical excellence, improve practice, and examine healthcare outcomes. The DNP degree also focuses on improving scholarship in a practice setting, analyzing models of care delivery, and promoting innovation (Chism, 2016). Fourthly, the program will equip me with the necessary leadership skills required in my field of practice. The program provides students with a great understanding of aspects such as risk management approaches, cost measurement approaches, quality improvement strategies, and practice management (Chism, 2016). The knowledge of the concepts mentioned above places one at a better position to take on nurse-led leadership responsibilities. Lastly, skills acquired from the program will enhance my ability to accomplish various goals and objectives in clinical practice due to the knowledge of clinical outcome evaluation approaches. These skills will foster my capacity to translate or transform research into actual practice, analyze and evaluate practice data, improve the reliability of healthcare outcomes and practice, and participate in research. Moreover, I will be able to utilize information systems to support and better patient care, system organization and quality, assess illnesses, design, impact, and influence policy options in healthcare, and demonstrate high levels of evidence-based care and clinical judgement.
In a world typified by the ever-increasing range of diseases, complexities of patient care, and technologies there is an increasing need for health care practitioners with the required skills and experience in their respective professions to ensure patient safety and quality. My clinical experience as a family nurse practitioner inspired me to pursue a DNP degree. I aspire to promote health to an optimal level and treat patients holistically, by addressing the root causes of their illnesses as opposed to the usual band-aid approach to care. During my practice, I often notice the significant increases in the prevalence of chronic disorders and the regular patient return visits, which stir up a couple of questions in my mind. Why are patients not getting better? What can we do to improve their health and outcomes? Specifically, women in their midlife dealing with perimenopause and menopause caught my attention. According to a study conducted by Ward, Schiller, & Goodman (2014), approximately fifty percent of adults globally suffer from at least one chronic health condition with twenty-five percent of the adults suffering from two or more chronic illnesses. Jessie et al., (2014) that the cost of chronic diseases accounted for around ninety percent ($3.2 trillion) of all costs of health care in the year 2015; this cost is increasing rapidly. During clinical practice, my focus has been on women in their midlife. The costs associated with postmenopausal and menopausal symptoms in women aged between forty-five and sixty-five years amounted to approximately $248 per patient annually amid 2010 and 2012. The cost mentioned above is similar to the cost the government incurs due to the treatment of other chronic conditions (Assaf, Bushmakin, Joyce, Louie, Flores, & Moffatt, 2017). During a woman’s transitional phase, women usually experience various symptoms associated with menopause. However, during hospital visits, practitioners often disregard these symptoms; this stance by practitioners may be attributed to the lack of adequate training in the management of menopausal symptoms. My encounter with these patients triggered my desire to further my studies to increase my knowledge in my profession. I also intend to influence the policy decision-makers to implement treatment approaches that aim to address a patient’s condition effectively. The implementation of policies that seek to improve patient care will aid in reducing costs, improving patient satisfaction, and reducing frequent hospital visits.
As we further our education, we have a professional and moral responsibility of bringing forth change in the way we deliver health care to our patients. My educational and professional background and my love for learning make me an excellent candidate for the DNP program and as a leader in the nursing profession. I have a bachelor and a master’s degree in nursing. After completing my master’s degree in nursing, I pursued a degree in integrative and functional medicine. I currently hold a certification in functional medicine. I also started a functional medicine practice in Georgia, which aims to help women with hormonal and psychosocial health concerns. Throughout my nursing career, I volunteered on medical missions to India and Nepal. During the medical missions my roles included providing primary care and training nursing students. Leadership skills were essential to fulfilling the daily hectic tasks. By pursuing the DNP degree, I will acquire the leadership skills required during the execution of various leadership roles, for instance, policymaking. With advanced leadership skills learned through a doctoral degree, I could play a more influential role globally to improve health care for disadvantaged communities and third world countries. Secondly, the DNP degree will foster my capacity to achieve many clinical practice goals such as improving patient care, producing better populace health, and reducing healthcare costs. Lastly, the program will expand my knowledge on the various concepts learnt in the MSN curricula and better my practical application of these concepts.


1. Assaf, A. R., Bushmakin, A. G., Joyce, N., Louie, M. J., Flores, M., and Moffatt, M., (2017). The Relative Burden of Menopausal and Postmenopausal Symptoms versus Other Major Conditions: A Retrospective Analysis of the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey Data. American health and drug benefits, 10(6), 311–321.
2. Chism, L. A. (2016). The doctor of nursing practice: A guidebook for role development and professional issues. Burlington, Mass: Jones and Bartlett.
3. Jessie Gerteis, MPH, et. al. (2014). Center for Healthcare Research and Quality. Retrieved 8/8/2019from
4. Ward, B. W., Schiller, J. S., and Goodman, R. A. (2014). Multiple chronic conditions among US adults: a 2012 update. Preventing chronic disease, 11, E62. doi:10.5888/pcd11.130389.

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