Neonatal Nurse Job Description

Are you interested in becoming a neonatal nurse? If so, you’re probably trying to research the job duties and training you will come across in this profession. Every neonatal nursing job is a little different, but they all involve roughly the same tasks in the end. If you are capable of taking on those tasks on a daily basis, you should do well in this career. Here is a comprehensive neonatal nurse job description that should help you decide if this is a good career for you.

The Work of a Neonatal Nurse

The work of a neonatal nurse is not always predictable. There are different stages of neonatal care that you could potentially work in, and each stage will come with its own set of tasks to fulfill. Some babies need closer monitoring than others, but they all require the same basic care in the end. Common job duties for neonatal nurses are as follows:

Job Duties

  • Change diapers
  • Feed neonatal babies
  • Respond to medical emergencies
  • Watch over life monitors
  • Train parents with neonatal children
  • Check vital signs
  • Administer medications

If that sounds like the perfect profession for you, read on to see how you could get involved with it.

Places of Employment for Neonatal Nurses

Depending on the area of neonatal nursing you choose to work in, you should be able to find a job just about anywhere. If you choose to work in intensive care, you may find jobs under different employers than a general care neonatal nurse. Here is a list of potential employers you might work for over time:


  • Acute Care Hospitals
  • Family Medicine Centers
  • Healthcare Facilities
  • General Hospitals
  • Medical Service Providers
  • Non-Profit Organizations
  • Nurse Staffing Agencies

If you specialize in an area of neonatal nursing, you may want to look for an employer associated with that concentration. You’ll never know what opportunities are out there for you until you look for them.

Educational Requirements for Neonatal Nurses

There are many degrees associated with neonatal nursing, and some of them lead to higher paying jobs than others. If you just want to work as a base-level nurse, you should be able to get by with an undergraduate degree. If you want to become a neonatal nurse practitioner, you will need to go to grad school. Possible degrees to keep in mind include:


  • Associate Degree Nursing
  • Associate of Applied Science in Respiratory Therapy
  • Associate of Science in Nursing
  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing
  • Bachelor of Science in Respiratory Therapy
  • Master of Nursing
  • Master of Science in Nursing as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
  • Master of Science in Nursing
  • Doctor of Medicine

You may also need to obtain a certification to verify your abilities as a neonatal nurse. Every state and employer is different in terms of the certifications they require, so you will need to do some research related to your situation. Here is a list of common certification programs for neonatal nurses:


  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)
  • Critical Care
  • Neonatal Resuscitation Program Provider
  • Advanced Cardiac Life Support
  • Registered Respiratory Therapist
  • American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • Pediatric Advanced Life Support
  • Pediatrics
  • Registered Nurse

Pay Rates for Neonatal Nurses

Of course, this neonatal nurse job description could not be complete without a look into the money you can earn in this career. Here are some salary statistics to show what your future pay may be:

Salary by Years of Experience

  • Less than 1 year of experience: $48,915 per year
  • 1-4 years of experience: $50,309 per year
  • 5-9 years of experience: $59,544 per year
  • 10-19 years of experience: $70,241 per year
  • 20 years of experience or more: $71,661 per year

Salary by Company Size

  • 1-9 staff members: $54,000 per year
  • 10-49 staff members: $64,130 per year
  • 50-199 staff members: $57,000 per year
  • 200-599 staff members: $59,495 per year
  • 600-1999 staff members: $74,880 per year
  • 2000-4999 staff members: $67,669 per year
  • 5000-19999 staff members: $67,694 per year
  • 20000-49999 staff members: $50,000 per year
  • 50000+ staff members: $70,000 per year

Take all of this information into consideration and figure out if the neonatal nurse job description fits your vision for the future. If it does, there are plenty of schools readily available for your education.