A Labor and Delivery Nurse is a Registered Nurse who specializes in Labor and Delivery.
They assist with monitoring a woman’s progress during labor and observing the individual’s vital statistics.
In addition, Labor and Delivery Nurses will also monitor the fetus and its vital statistics assuring the health of both newborn and mom are favorable.
Individuals who want to become a Labor and Delivery Nurse will have the ability to handle not only stressful, but rewarding conditions with the birth of a new individual.
With their medical knowledge gleaned from their studies and some innate characteristics, individuals interested in pursuing this profession can experience both personal and professional satisfaction.
Education Requirements to Become a Labor and Delivery Nurse
Individuals who want to become a Labor and Delivery Nurse will need to become a Registered Nurse (RN) before seeking a specialization in Labor and Deliver.
Labor and Delivery is a specialization that focuses on assisting women patients and their newborns during labor and delivery.
In order to enter the profession as a Registered Nurse, individuals can choose from three common paths.
Individuals can attain a bachelor’s of science degree in nursing (BSN), an associate’s degree in nursing (ADN), or receive a diploma from an accredited nursing program.
In addition, individuals who want to become a Labor and Delivery Nurse will need to secure a license in order to practice.
An associate’s degree (ADN) or a diploma program usually takes approximately 2 to 3 years to complete.
A bachelor’s in nursing (BSN) typically takes about 4 years to complete.
Typical programs include coursework in: psychology, nutrition, chemistry, microbiology, physiology, anatomy as well as courses in liberal arts, social and behavioral sciences.
All programs include supervised clinical experience with bachelor’s programs offering the most clinical experience.
Individuals can gain experience in general nursing or receive specialized training in labor and delivery during their clinical experience.
Individuals who pursue a bachelor’s degree in order to become a Labor and Delivery Nurse will also qualify for better job opportunities.
For example, these individuals will be able to seek opportunities in research, administrative positions, teaching and consulting.
One of the last steps to enter this profession is to become licensed as a registered nurse.
Licensing will depend on the state an individual works in.
In order to seek licensing, individuals will need to complete an accredited program and pass the National Council Licensure Examination.
For more information on this licensing exam, please visit NCLEX Examination.
Labor and Delivery Nurse Job Description
Labor and Delivery Nurses are licensed Registered Nurses that are specialized in providing healthcare to women who are giving birth and to their unborn and newborn babies.
They care for women before, during and after childbirth assuring their patients’ vital statistics are normal.
They will also assist patients who are experiencing difficulties with the birth.
Labor and Delivery Nurses will take their patient’s vital statistics, record any possible symptoms, record medical histories, observe and record patient observations, consult with doctors or other healthcare professionals, administer medicines or treatments, assist doctors during caesarean sections, teach new mother’s about infant care and discuss any possible postpartum health complications.
Labor and Delivery Nurse Salary and Career Path
In 2012, the median salary for Registered Nurses, which includes the Labor and Delivery Nurse profession, was approximately $65,470 per year.
Exact wages will depend on several factors including level of experience and the type of health care facility an individual is employed in.
For example, individuals working for the government can expect to earn a median salary of approximately $68,540 while individuals working in a physician’s office can expect a median salary of $58,420 per year.
The job outlook for all Registered Nurses, also including Labor and Delivery Nurses is expected to increase by 19 percent through the year 2022.
This job growth is considered faster than average when compared to other professions.
Individuals with a bachelor’s degree and more experience will have better job opportunities.
Individuals pursuing a career as a Labor and Delivery Nurse have many things to look forward to including a healthy job outlook, competitive wages and the ability to work with women and families welcoming a new family member.