Best Community & Public Health Clinical Nurse Schools

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Community and Public Health Clinical Nurse Specialists are Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS) who work with communities and populations – in contrast to most nurse specialists who provide direct patient care on a one-on-one basis. The Public Health and Community CNS is primarily responsible for improving community health, ensuring public safety, increasing access to good healthcare, and educating people.

Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS) are advanced practice RNs who have a post-graduate degree (master’s or doctorate) in nursing that prepares them to become a clinical nurse specialist. The CNS’s primary responsibility is to improve patient outcomes across their particular sphere of influence. In the case of the Community and Public Health CNS, their sphere encompasses healthcare as it related to a variety of community and public health issues and initiatives. In addition to the previously identified roles, the Community and Public Health CNS helps develop public health policy, plan community health programs, and assesses the healthcare needs of communities, including need relating to cultural and social influences.

While either a master’s or doctorate in nursing will serve to qualify an RN to become a Community and Public Health CNS, the most common degree obtained in this pursuit is the Masters of Science in Nursing (MSN) with a concentration in Public Community Health Nursing. This degree, as its name suggests, prepares students to practice nursing in the care of communities and populations (which are often at risk and vulnerable). The overall objective of the MSN in Public and Community Health Nursing is to specially prepare CNSs so that they are willing and able to advance the causes of healthcare in populations and communities throughout the world. The MSN will help students to assess, plan and implement health policies, programs and leadership strategies. Upon completion of the MSN in Public and Community Health Nursing, or comparable program, students can sit for the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) certification examination receive the Clinical Specialist in Public Community Health Nursing designation.

Below you can explore the top community and public health clinical nurse specialist colleges and universities in the United States.

Community & Public Health Clinical Nurse College Rankings

1Johns Hopkins University – Baltimore, MD
2University of Washington – Seattle, WA
3University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill – Chapel Hill, NC
4University of California–San Francisco – San Francisco, CA
5University of Illinois–Chicago – Chicago, IL
6University of Minnesota–Twin Cities – Minneapolis, MN

Source: U.S. News & World Report

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