Quick guide - Neonatal nursing employment

Is neonatal nursing employment right for you? It is, if you are sensitive to the care and needs of a newborn, including those who are prematurely born. Your touch should be gentle and yet firm enough to handle babies of this nature.

What does a neonatal nurse do?

A neonatal nurse cares for a newborn for up to 28 days after birth. Neo refers to new and natal refers to origin.

What is a neonatal nursery?

There are 3 levels in a neonatal nursery:

  1. Level I
  2. Level II
  3. Level III

Level I

Healthy newborns are housed here and then discharged with their mothers later.

Level II

Premature or ill newborns are housed here and are discharged after their mothers. They are provided with special or intermediate nursing care.

Level III

Newborns housed here rely on advanced technology for survival and take the longest time to discharge after their mothers. They are provided with intensive care in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

How to be a neonatal nurse

For regular neonatal nurse

You must either possess the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) or the Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN). In this way, you can become a Registered Nurse (RN).

For NICU nurse

In addition to being a Registered Nurse, you should have a certification in neonatal resuscitation. Working experience as an NICU nurse is optional.

Additional qualification

You can be additionally, qualified in midwifery and have experience in adult health and surgical nursing.

Nursing standards

Bear in mind that nursing standards are not the same for different countries and even different health institutions.

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