Number of nurse practitioners licensed in US hits new record

More than 355,000 nurse practitioners are licensed to practice in the U.S., up 9 percent from the estimated 325,000 reported in May 2021, according to an estimate the American Association of Nurse Practitioners released April 7.

This figure marks a new record. A total of 290,000 licensed NPs were estimated to be practicing in 2020, and 270,000 were estimated to be in the workforce the year prior.

For its workforce estimates, the American Association of Nurse Practitioners examines data from state nursing boards.

"Nurse practitioners are answering the call to provide vital healthcare services to all Americans," American Association of Nurse Practitioners President April Kapu, DNP, APRN, said in a news release. "With the challenges of the pandemic and the demand for more accessible and equitable care, NPs continue to enhance healthcare delivery across all settings. Today's nurse practitioner count indicates that demand for these highly-qualified clinicians continues to be on the rise — and for good reason."

In January, U.S. News and World Report ranked nurse practitioner as the best healthcare job for 2022. Nurse practitioners in the U.S. make an average of $118,040 annually, according to the latest data released March 31 by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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