A Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM) is an advance practice nurse who has obtained a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree, and has completed two years of post-graduate studies in an midwifery program through a campus-based or online nursing school. Some CNM certification programs will even accept a Bachelor Degree in other concentrations, guiding the student toward midwifery studies through an accelerated nursing program. This highly specialized nursing education track provides the basis for a nurse to attend births both within a hospital, at birthing centers or even at home, depending on the regulations of each individual state. According to the American College of Nurse-Midwives, 96.1% of CNM/CM-attended births were in hospitals, 2% in birth centers and 1.8% were in homes. More than 90% of all midwife-attended births were attended by CNMs/CMs since 1989. Additionally, a CNM can work in an office setting, assisting women of all ages with concerns relating to birth control, family planning, infertility, menopause and puberty.
Many states allow a Certified Nurse Midwife to practice these skills, although the scope of care is limited to low-risk births and is typically monitored by an OB/GYN. 26 states offer licensure for midwives, yet nine states prohibit the practice all together. While it is possible to practice as a midwife without completing the requirements set forth by the American College of Nurse-Midwives, the CNM certification through ACNM is an important process for the Certified Nurse Midwife as it proves the needed nursing and midwifery education and skills have been acquired. The annual salary for a CNM is over $90,000, on average across the U.S.
As the ability for advance practice nurses to move into more autonomous positions within the medical field grows, specializations like midwifery will continue to be vital to the health and well-being of women in all stages of life. From the educational and certification requirements to the personal satisfaction that comes with the role of the midwife, this career choice brings a great amount of challenge and accomplishment to all Certified Nurse Midwives.
Become a Certified Nurse Midwife
To become a Certified Nurse Midwife you must have achieved a Master of Science in Nursing, RN designation and certification by the American Midwifery Certification Board. Start your path to this high paying career that is incredibly rewarding by exploring education options below. We recommend getting information from several so you can compare the programs, costs, time commitments and financial aid options.
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