The demand for nurse practitioners in Texas currently is exceeding and outpacing the nation. The market for nurse practitioner jobs in Texas is growing at a rate of 41 percent, considerably higher than the national rate of 34 percent. This trend is expected to increase as more Texans enroll in health insurance programs and seek quality, expert care from nurse practitioners in their communities.
Affordable Care Act
With the passing of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), more Americans than ever before are now enrolled in healthcare insurance programs. This influx of citizens seeking healthcare has created an increase in nurse practitioner jobs, especially in rural and underserved areas lacking appropriate primary care services. Nurse practitioners are highly educated and trained to meet the complex needs of their patients, while containing costs. It is projected that by 2019, due to the increase in citizens seeking primary care, there will be a deficit of between 4,000 to 7,000 primary care providers. Nurse practitioners will be perfectly suited to fill many of those positions.
Nurse Managed Health Centers
In recognizing the ability of nurse practitioners to meet the growing needs of the newly insured, the ACA provides funding for Nurse Managed Health Centers (NMHC). These centers will be community based and will provide services under the direction of an advanced practice registered nurse. This unique opportunity will provide leadership roles for many nurse practitioners as communities attempt to find new and revolutionary ways to meet the needs of their population.
Texas experienced a 7.2 percent population growth in 2014, compared to the national average of 3.3 percent. This growth, coupled with the increased need for quality healthcare, continues to contribute to the demand for nurse practitioners in Texas. However, with the median household income below the national average, Texans will most likely be seeking the cost-effective, quality care that nurse practitioners can provide.
Counties Without Nurse Practitioners
In the state of Texas, there are more than 40 counties with no nurse practitioners. These voids often leave residents without access to the primary care that they need. Nurse practitioners, and those seeking to start their own NMHC, will have ample opportunities to practice in these underserved areas.
The demand for nurse practitioners in Texas will continue to grow as the population ages and increases in the state. Opportunities will abound for those seeking to further their education and become a nurse practitioner.
Learn about the UT Arlington online MSN FNP program.