Neonatal Nurses

?The medical field provides many opportunities for people because it has several different careers to choose from, not to mention the hundreds of different careers in or related to the nursing field. People in today’s society always have a favorite in everything, whether it is a color or a sport. Some people would say that their favorite type of nurse is a Neonatal Nurse. After all, Neonatal Nurses are the first ones to care for the future generation as soon as they exit the womb. Neonatal nurses are responsible for taking care of newborns.

The newborn may be completely healthy, deathly sick, or somewhere in between (Careers in Focus: Nursing 88). While at work, Neonatal Nurses have multiple duties to complete. These nurses attend all Cesarean sections and high risk deliveries in case the infant will need immediate medical attention. After the mother gives birth, the Neonatal Nurse will weigh the infant and check for any deformities. Neonatal Nurses also teach the mother how to care for the little one. If the little one has a sickness, the nurse will teach the mother how to care for the certain disease.


Sometimes, he or she will perform lumbar punctures or endotracheal intubations. Mainly, Neonatal Nurses manage ventilators and make rounds on all patients. Some simpler tasks that a Neonatal Nurse may be responsible for include completing admits and discharges or evaluating x-rays and labs (Massey). ?There are three levels in the neonatal field. Level one is a nursery that cares for newborns that are completely healthy (Careers in Focus: Nursing 89). Level one nurseries are almost out of service because healthy babies now stay in the room with the mothers after birth (“Neonatal Nurse Job Description”).

Level two nurseries consist of premature newborns or newborns that were born with a birth defect (“Neonatal Nurse Job Description”). This level is not as frantic or busy as level three, so if one chooses to become a Neonatal Nurse, they might want to start off in a level two nursery. Level three nurseries care for high risk newborns that need high- tech equipment to stay alive (Careers in Focus: Nursing 89). Level three is more commonly known as the Neonatal Intensive Care unit or the NICU (Neonatal Nurse Salary). If one wants to become a neonatal nurse, they must know multiple sciences. Careers in Focus: Nursing states that one should get started in high school by taking several science and math courses (89). It is extremely smart to take physiology, anatomy, statistics, and biology (Massey). The very first step in becoming a neonatal nurse is to enroll into an accredited school of nursing. One might want to research all colleges that provide nursing courses before choosing a specific college because one must be sure they will receive high quality education.

After all, these nurses will be responsible for the lives of babies. Before one can actually become any kind of specific nurse, he or she must first become the basic registered nurse. Basic nursing education typically takes around four years to complete (Neonatal Nursing Career Info). Massey stated that a Bachelor of Science degree is required for this career. Afterwards, one must pass an examination to attain a license if they would like to work in critical care. One must do this by applying to the AACN Certification Corporation (Careers in Focus: Nursing 91).

Sometimes, certain NICU’s prefer one to have prior training or on the job training before applying to the job. ?Once one becomes a Neonatal Nurse, he or she has a chance to be further educated. The further one takes his or her education, the more chances they will have of being hired. This way, one can have the choice of being a Neonatal Nurse Practioner (“Neonatal Nursing Career Info”). Massey said that a minimum experience of two years is required to apply to a Neonatal Nurse Practioner school.

If one becomes a Neonatal Nurse Practioner, they will gain a much higher salary but will also take on more responsibility. ?Salary, for all careers, depends on the place of employment, type of education, years of experience, and location of the corporation (Careers in Focus: Nursing 92). It is also highly affected by the company’s size. The more experience one has, the higher the pay will be. When one starts out in the neonatal field, the salary will be around $45,000 annually. Most Neonatal Nurses that are more experienced will receive a salary of about $68,000 annually.

As one advances in this field, like when one earns a master’s degree, the salary can exceed $90,000 annually. Adding to the annual salary, one can also receive additional compensation by working on the weekends or even by working at night. Mississippi is the top paying state for Neonatal Nurses and also has a lower cost of living, so one living there will earn more out of his or her salary (“Neonatal Nurse Salary”). ?Neonatal Nurses usually work in a hospital setting with a very clean environment (Careers in Focus: Nursing 93).

Massey said that in a hospital, one will be required to work seven to eight twenty-four hour shifts in one month, but in a clinic, one will work fourteen days out of every month. Some Neonatal Nurses will work in the community providing home care (“Neonatal Nursing Career Info”). Neonatal Nurses are always standing up and on the go. One will tend to be around babies every second of his or her shift. These nurses come into contact with several stressful events, for example, when a little baby gives in to the disease and just cannot fight it anymore (Massey).

The nurse will have to be able to work with the family of the newborn and also be able to work with his or her coworkers because, as Massey stated, “It truly is a coworker family. ” ?Neonatal Nurses are highly needed right now and with babies being born every second of the day, there is no doubt that these nurses are essential to the future (Careers in Focus: Nursing 93). “Neonatal Nursing Career Info” said that job openings for this career are expected to greatly increase. Employment for this field is also much higher than the average job.

People with a master’s degree or higher have an excellent chance of being hired over other competitors (Careers in Focus: Nursing 88-93). Massey stated that there are multiple areas to advance in this field which gives many people more opportunities than most careers could offer. This field rapidly changes in medicine, so one who would like to enter this career or one who is already started in this career should definitely keep up with changes by reading articles and other sources related to this field (Massey). Neonatal Nurses are responsible for taking care of newborns that can have a variety of problems or diseases. This field of medicine is extremely demanding and this career is tremendously essential. If hospitals do not have enough of these nurses, there is a risk of multiple newborns dying. Should one consider being a Neonatal Nurse as a career, they will need to do research to make sure they can handle all of the responsibilities that are put on a Neonatal Nurse.

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