Content courtesy of Frontier Nursing University
If you have a passion for serving women and families and providing holistic and patient-centered care, you should consider becoming a Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM).
A certified nurse-midwife is a primary healthcare provider to women of all ages throughout their lives. CNMs offer gynecologic and family planning services, as well as preconception, pregnancy, childbirth, postpartum, and newborn care. They also provide primary care such as conducting annual exams, writing prescriptions, and offering basic nutrition counseling.
Demand Is Growing
The need for nurse-midwives in the healthcare arena is rapidly growing as healthcare organizations across the country are embracing collaborative models of care and adding nurse-midwives to healthcare teams.
The Bureau of Labor and Statistics predicts job opportunities for nurse-midwives will grow 31% by 2026 — a rate that’s more than four times the national average for all occupations. If you are looking for an occupation that is full of opportunity, nurse-midwifery is a great option.
Nurse-Midwives Are Strong Advocates for Women and Families
Nurse-midwives have the opportunity to build long-lasting relationships with the women they serve. Their unique skill sets have been shown to improve quality and decrease costs associated with birth, making CNMs valuable assets in all birth settings. Nurse-midwives also serve as excellent advocates for patients, which is particularly important as more and more women seek to be active participants in their health care and birth choices.
“It’s the best job on the planet,” said Tonya Nicholson, DNP, CNM, WHNP-BC, CNE, FACNM, Chair of Frontier Nursing University’s Department of Midwifery and Women’s Health. “What an honor and a privilege, and also a great responsibility, to be with women and with families as they’re growing.”
How to Become a Nurse-Midwife
The journey to becoming a certified nurse-midwife includes seeking out a master’s or doctoral degree program. CNMs are educated in two disciplines: midwifery and nursing. They earn graduate degrees, complete a midwifery education program accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education (ACME), and pass a national certification examination administered by the American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB) to receive the professional designation of CNM.
Some schools offer distance education programs, in which your home community serves as your classroom. These flexible nurse-midwifery programs deliver didactic coursework using web-based courses that allow students to achieve their higher education goals without leaving home for classes. Upon completion of coursework, students work with clinics, hospitals, and preceptors to get hands-on clinical experience providing nurse-midwifery care in their community.
The Experience Is Priceless
While each birth is special, there are moments in the work of a nurse-midwife that are absolutely unforgettable. Nurse-midwife Kim said her favorite birth was with a woman who planned to have an unmedicated delivery.
“She got to a point where she wanted an epidural and I said, ‘I will not deny you an epidural if that’s what you really want, but I know your goals, and I would like you to try this first.’, Kim said. “So I had her stand up and dance with her husband next to the bedside and thirty minutes later, we had a baby. It was a supportive and encouraging experience for me that, yes indeed, this process works.”
Robin, another nurse-midwife, shared, “I don’t think there’s another profession on the planet that can even come close,” she said. “We talk about empowering women, but they empower us. Their stories are amazing. Each woman we serve is amazing in her own way and we get to bear witness to the most intimate, special moment of her life.”
Get information on Frontier Nursing University’s Certified Nurse-Midwife programs.