Women's Health Nurse Practitioner

Curriculum Change: We are no longer accepting applications for the Women's Health Nurse Practitioner program. Please see Women's Health subspecialty program page.

Program Description

The Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner (WHNP) Program focuses on the development of an advanced practice nurse who provides primary care to women across the life span, from adolescence to the elderly.

The WHNP Program encourages students to consider the uniqueness of the individual woman and the woman in the context of her community, her relationship with family and others, and her environment. Such woman-centered care is appropriate across populations, social classes, socioeconomic and age groups, and in urban, suburban, and rural settings.

The School’s scientific foundation of research, theory, and practice is integrated with a focus on the impact of health policy and social issues on health. Students develop a comprehensive understanding of women’s health needs by spending classroom and clinical time developing a solid knowledge base of women’s health problems, practices, and issues. Initial clinical experiences incorporate primary care in the ambulatory, gynecological, obstetrical, and family planning settings. Advanced clinical offer students an intense experience in such specialized areas as breast disease, osteoporosis, oncology, and hypertension.

Graduates of the program are prepared to practice health promotion, disease prevention, and treatment by:

  • Performing comprehensive, women-centered health histories and screenings that consider recognized health risks, as well as environmental risks such as physical and domestic violence, sexual assault, and substance abuse
  • Performance corresponding physical assessments
  • Individualizing educational programs
  • Developing and implementing a plan for the management of common women’s health concerns, such as normal pregnancy, family planning, or menopausal care
  • Planning and implementing the treatment of common, uncomplicated acute and chronic health problems of women

In addition to their traditional role in primary care, obstetric, gynecology, and family planning settings, WHNPs work in specialized areas of women’s health care, bringing with them a specific focus on health promotion and prevention in the context of that setting. They apply the practices of women-centered primary care to complex patients in collaboration with an interdisciplinary team. By ensuring communication with the team and promoting shared decision making with the patient, WHNPs reinforce the humanistic approach necessary to ensure positive health outcomes.

Graduates are eligible for certification as a nurse practitioner in all states in which certification is required as well as for professional certification exams.

The Program Director for the Women's Health Nurse Practitioner specialty is Adena Bargad, PhD, CNM.

Clinical Sites

Clinical sites are available in the tri-state area and beyond, and can be permanent or rotating. Clinical sites vary in setting and you can be assigned location at hospitals, out-patient clinics, home care, or schools to name a few.


Please contact the Office of Admissions for details regarding admission and financial aid packages.

Admission criteria include:

  • Current New York State nursing license or eligibility
  • Satisfactory score on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
  • An undergraduate course in statistics
  • Three references attesting to applicant's academic ability and potential
  • Personal goal statement that is congruent with program goals (two pages, double-spaced, 12 pt. font)
  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae
  • A physical assessment course
  • Bachelor's degree in nursing from an NLN or CCNE accredited program or a non-nursing bachelor's degree

*RN's with a non-nursing baccalaureate degree are required to complete 5 credits in community health in addition to the course requirement listed. The courses that fulfill the community health requirement are N6703, The Science of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention in the Community (3 didactic credits) and N5292, Nursing Practice in the Community (2 clinical credits).


For Applicants Who Hold an Undergraduate Degree in Nursing
A sample program plan is provided on the back of this document to make you aware of the academic requirements of the program. Please be advised that this program plan is a sample, and individual plans of study are reviewed and approved upon acceptance to the program. Progression in the program is contingent upon meeting academic policies. The School of Nursing reserves the right to change the course offering schedule as stated in the student bulletin.

Sample Program Plan

Course Number Course Name Credits Type
Summer I: 13 Credits
Advanced Physiology 3 Core
Maternal-Fetal-Newborn Physiology 2 Core
Evaluation and Application of Research 3 Core
Advanced Clinical Assessment Across the Lifespan 3 Core
Advanced Clinical Assessment: Women's Health 2 Specialty
Fall I: 14 Credits
Primary Care of Women Across the Lifespan I 3 Specialty
Health and Social Policy: The Context for Practice and Research 3 Core
Advanced Pharmacology 3 Core
Comprehensive Women's Health 3 Specialty
Practicum in Comprehensive Women's Health 2 Specialty
Spring I: 12 Credits
Pathophysiology Across the Lifespan 3 Core
Primary Care of Women Across the Life Span II 3 Specialty
Care of Childbearing Women: Antepartum and Postpartum Care 3 Specialty
Practicum: Childbearing Woman 3 Specialty
Summer II: 7 - 9 Credits
Interpersonal Violence and Abuse: Prevention, Assessment and Intervention for Health Care Professionals 1 Core
Management and Advanced Practice Nursing 1 Core
Capstone Seminar 1 Specialty
Advanced Practicum in Women's Health 4-6 Specialty
Total Credits 46 - 51  

This page was last updated on 03/29/2012 and is subject to change at any time.

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