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Name:
Certified Nurse Midwife
Description:
Cares for childbearing women during preconception, prenatal, labor and delivery, and postpartum periods, and provides family-planning counseling and gynecological care. Offers an alternative childbearing experience to low-risk, uncomplicated patients; the experience is considered more natural and intervention-free. Encourages active participation of the woman and her family during pregnancy and childbirth. Provides holistic, continuous care, safe clinical management, education, and, in some cases, primary care for women’s health needs
Settings:
Hospitals, free-standing clinics, schools, health departments, ambulatory care centers, homes, private practice
Characteristics:
Patient care and long-term relationships, autonomy and independence, teaching patients and students, making a difference in patients' lives
Drawbacks:
Unpredictable timing of childbirth, long hours, irregular schedule, lack of appreciation of role by other healthcare providers, difficulty getting hospital privileges, grief related to poor pregnancy outcomes
Desirable skills:
Sensitivity, communication, flexibility, commitment to holistic practice, desire to help others, independence, refined assessment skills, sound clinical judgment
Education:
AD, Diploma, or BSN for certificate; BSN for MSN program
Employers:
Hospitals, clinics, health departments, private practices
Certification:
Organizations:
American College of Nurse Midwives
818 Connecticut Ave., NW, #900
Washington, DC 20006
800-753-2266
 
Association of Women's Health, Obstetric, and Neonatal Nurses
700 14th St., NW, #600
Washington, DC 20005
202-662-1600
Publications:
Journal of Nurse-Midwifery
800-753-2266