Neonatal nurses care for newborn children who experience health complications after birth. These men and women are responsible for teaching parents to care for their children, and they are in charge of monitoring newborns around the clock to alleviate any medical problems that may come about. If you enjoy working with children and feel that you have the caregiving skills needed to work with sickly newborns, this could be the perfect nursing specialization for you. Here is a look at the kinds of work you may do in this field, along with the salary you could experience within it.
Neonatal Nurse Job Duties
The job duties in neonatal nursing vary by level and by patient, so you will need a large range of skills to be able to work in this field. Possible responsibilities include:
- Monitoring machines that sustain the life of premature newborns
- Assessing oxygen levels and heart rates for neonatal babies
- Feeding newborn babies and instructing mothers to do the same
- Administering medications to neonatal patients
- Assisting physicians in the NICU sector of the hospital
There are other duties you may have as a neonatal nurse, especially if you become the head of a department. As long as you have the right education backing your career, you should be able to take on all of these responsibilities successfully.
Neonatal Nurse Salary Levels
Most people only care to learn about their future careers after learning about the money they can earn. Admit it – you probably want to know what your neonatal nurse salary is going to be just to verify that it will be worth your educational efforts in the future. There is nothing wrong with that. Seeing that every neonatal nurse makes a slightly different income based on her situation, it may be best for you to review some of the national averages at the moment to get an approximation as to what you could make. Here are a few charts to keep in mind.
Salary by Position
- Family Nurse Practitioner: $76,975 per year
- Neonatal Nurse Practitioner: $80,242 per year
- Nurse Practitioner: $63,542 per year
- Pediatrics Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner: $54,028 per year
- Registered Nurse: $51,093 per year
- Emergency Room Registered Nurse: $60,212 per year
- Respiratory Therapist: $55,000 per year
Salary by Years of Experience
- Less than 1 year: $48,908 per year
- 1-4 years: $50,161 per year
- 5-9 years: $60,109 per year
- 10-19 years: $68,344 per year
- 20 years or more: $72,953 per year
Salary by Certification
- Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS): $57,769 per year
- American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC): $77,599 per year
- Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation: $58,075 per year
- Critical Care: $57,536 per year
- Neonatal Resuscitation Program (NRP) Provider: $61,568 per year
- Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS): $69,189 per year
- Pediatrics: $72,482 per year
- Registered Nurse (RN): $59,413 per year
- Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT): $51,620 per year
Salary by Degree
- Bachelor of Science in Nursing: $55,839 per year
- Master of Science in Nursing: $72,625 per year
- Associate Degree Nursing: $54,000 per year
- Associate of Science in Nursing: $60,000 per year
- Doctor of Medicine: $133,250 per year
- Master of Nursing: $100,000 per year
- Bachelor of Arts in Nursing: $55,000 per year
- Master of Science in Nursing as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner: $109,926 per year
As you can see, there is a lot of money to be made in neonatal nursing. You just have to make a positive effort to become a neonatal nurse, and then you should have more than enough money to support your family and lifestyle. At the end of the day, your efforts in college and beyond will be well worth the financial and moral rewards you can get from this career.
How to Become a Neonatal Nurse
If the neonatal nurse job description above has convinced you that this is the field you want to be in, you will need to get a bachelor of science in nursing, followed by a master of science in nursing. This will give you the overall education you need to work as a registered nurse, but it will also help you understand neonatal care specifically. As long as you are devoted to your education, you should be able to pass the licensing exam and begin work in this field.
Popular Schools and Recommended Degrees
It takes a dedicated educational institution to stand beside you throughout your career. Whether you are already a nurse or have just made the decision to become one, Kaplan University has the people, programs, and professional affiliations to help you pursue your educational and career goals. Kaplan's nursing degree and certificate programs are taught by practicing professionals who are dedicated to helping you prepare for real-world challenges.
Liberty University Online
Liberty University's Department of Nursing is designed to provide individuals with a broad educational background, which builds upon liberal arts, behavioral and social sciences as well as nursing. The curriculum for the nursing program at Liberty University is directly derived from the stated purpose, philosophy, objectives and organizing framework of the Department of Nursing which is based on Patricia Benner?s nursing theory and the nursing process. It provides a framework for practice and a conceptual approach to the nursing curriculum.
As the largest group in the US healthcare workforce, nurses are challenged to make a significant difference in the health outcomes of individuals and populations. The RN to BSN degree completion program at Colorado Technical University is designed to prepare nurses with the knowledge and skills needed to expand their practice options for a variety of clinical and administrative leadership activities and to manage change in an increasingly complex and diverse environment.