Caring. Compassionate. Quick thinking. Any nurse who works with children might tell you that these characteristics are needed almost daily on the job. From bringing these tiny patients into the world to providing ongoing care, nurses are there through each step of a child's development.
When a baby is born, a labor and delivery nurse monitors the mother and baby to keep both patients safe. If a newborn needs medical care post-delivery, a neonatal nurse practitioner may step in to treat the baby. As the baby begins to grow, pediatric nurses, along with school nurses, carry the children through adolescence. Each of these roles is crucial to make sure young patients are getting the specialized care they need.
So if you're an aspiring nurse who enjoys working with children, here's a list of five nursing jobs just for you. Each one includes a salary estimate from NurseJournal.org.
Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Registered Nurse
Average Salary - $61,252
RegisteredNursing.org says Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) nurses are responsible for monitoring and providing care for medically fragile newborns. Private hospitals, public hospitals and home-health services all hire NICU nurses to care for babies with various health concerns. This care can last for up to a year in some cases.
According to Nurse.org, "Helping children to grow up big and strong is really at the heart of what pediatric nurses do every day." From infants to adolescents, pediatric nurses are the ones who take care of young patients by providing comfort and the specialized care they need. Pediatric nurses are trained in communicating with youthful patients and their guardians. That's one of the reasons why their presence helps to ease the overall health care process.
School nurses may take on a variety of tasks from treating medical illnesses to providing health counseling. Outside of caring for sick or wounded students, nurses might administer medicine, oversee annual hearing and vision screenings or maintain student health records.
While most positions are found in elementary school, middle school or high school, Nurse.org added colleges and military bases as locations that hire school nurses.
Labor and delivery nurses take care of both mothers and unborn babies through the birthing process. As patients move from the pre-birth stage through the post-birth stage, the L&D nurse is there to monitor heart rates, provide coaching and make sure the process is running smoothly. If needed, an L&D nurse may also assist with Cesarean sections, according to RNcareers.org.
If you are passionate about babies, neonatal nursing might be a good career choice. The National Association of Neonatal Nurses says these nurse practitioners work with brand new infants who were born with birth defects, heart problems or other medical concerns. When a baby is born, the neonatal period is usually defined as the first month of life, but it's not uncommon for a neonatal nurse to work with a baby for much longer if they are still not well.