What Is An LPN To Maternity Nurse?
Working as an LPN or licensed practice nurse, you may find that there is a wide scope of duties you are expected to perform. This can include working in general hospital situations, specific situations and the like, but for those who wish to specialize in maternity wards, you need to know what to expect. Bringing children into the world is very rewarding process but knowing how to do it and ensure the maximum health of both baby and mother is a skill that takes time to learn.
The duties of a maternity nurse include helping the doctor deliver babies and assisting with pain management of the mother in the birth process. A maternity nurse also has to check patient vital signs and even help with care of the baby and mother after the birth. One of the biggest responsibilities of a nurse in this field is making sure that the birthing experience is exactly as the mother and father want it to be.
LPN To Maternity Nurse Requirements
Working in this field is not easy and if you are already an LPN, you will know how much work nursing involves. Those who wish to be in this field need to be:
- Patient – because you are dealing with mothers and fathers in stressful situations, you need to be able to keep your cool at all times. An even temperament goes a long way in this field.
- Willing to work long hours – a birth can happen in a few minutes or can take days, and as such a maternity nurse needs to be prepared to work shifts which may long and which may be scheduled for strange hours.
- Excellent people skills – working with people means that you need a certain degree of intuition and empathy so that you can help them through a difficult situation. This is especially true when someone is giving birth and being able to help them through this stressful time is what makes a really good nurse.
- Decisive – because of the nature of the job and all of the things that could go wrong in a short space of time, it is vital for a good maternity nurse to be able to make quick decisions. This could be the difference between life and death for many patients.
To pursue this field, you will need to be a high school graduate, but you can prepare yourself for what is involved by doing some volunteer work. This can involve being a candy striper in a maternity ward where you start learning about procedures and how things are done. You will also need to pursue your LPN degree once you leave school. Choose an accredited school where you know you can advance consistently. For those who wish to skip a step, you can go straight to becoming an RN, though this may take a lot more time and a lot more work.
Many school programs will let you transfer your LPN to an RN degree, but this is only necessary for those who wish to study for a long period for a higher reward.
How To Become A LPN To Maternity Nurse
When looking to become an LPN working in a maternity ward, you will need some experience. As an LPN, you may have already done some work with a maternity ward, and thus will have your qualification, that is, have passed your NCLEX exams. However, being prepared to work in this field also means being able to obtain experience and this means putting in clinic hours. You will need to study such courses as general maternity care as well as course specific to the mother and the baby.
An example of this could include learning about postpartum depression and all of its implications so that you can help a mother who is dealing with it, or learning about neonatal care so that you can help babies who have just been born acclimatize to the world. An LPN will need to have at least a year of general nursing experience to excel in this field.
If you wish to pursue additional training, you can also continue with CEUs or continuing education units. These will give you the opportunity to learn about new developments in the field and how you can advance your knowledge and experience. They will also help you make a higher salary in the long run.
Online/Distance Education Programs
Those who wish to do so can go online to finish their training or to get more education. An LPN can also get involved in a distance education program that allows for them to keep working while they study. When looking for an institution that offers these services, one of the most important things to look for is whether or not they are accredited and registered with a nursing organization.
This will help you to determine whether they are the right place for you to study and to get the education that will help you advance your career. In terms of online education, a candidate can complete courses via live chat, attend virtual seminars and even submit essays and tests online. The same is mostly true for distance learning. Completing your education in this way allows you to work while you study and this could help you advance your career without having to worry about providing for your family.
There is a lot of opportunity out these for those who choose to follow this career path and this means potentially higher salaries. A maternity nurse usually works in a hospital or birthing clinic, so the amount of jobs available depends on the area and the state in which you are working. There are a lot more opportunities in rural areas than in urban areas, purely because this is a scarce skill and those who live in rural areas often don’t have access to the all of the facilities that those who live in the city will have.
A maternity nurse also has an added benefit in that they can move from area to area and from specialization to specialization. This is because of the amount of experience gained in working as an LPN and in a maternity ward prepares a nurse for just about any job, so the transition to pediatrics or to gynecology for example, would be completely natural. For those who wish to move into a higher position, such as management, they should aspire to become a head maternity nurse, which involves a lot more administration than some of the junior positions. In this though, there is the potential to earn more and get more responsibility.
You may even decide to expand your career and go into teaching, which is a very in demand position. This is because of the amount of LPN to maternity nurses needed who cannot get sufficient training. Doing this means giving lectures on the subject and being able to teach young nurses in the clinics.
According to government surveys, the general salary for an LPN going to a maternity nurse is about $76 000 a year. Of course, this depends on a variety of factors, not the least of which includes the nurse’s level of experience. What is also important to note here is the state that the nurse lives in, since some states will pay better and have more job opportunities available. Those who decide to go into teaching as well as working can earn an additional salary.
The decision to become a maternity nurse is a calling. Working with babies and with mothers dealing with the difficulty of labor can be overwhelming for those who are not prepared for it, and this is just one reason that the maternity nurse’s job is so important. One of the other reasons is that a maternity nurse can assess a situation and if it is going wrong, help to correct it. They play a vital role in the health of the mother and of the baby and in the relationship between the two.
This is a relationship that could set the tone of their relationship for the rest of their lives and thus anyone who decides to become a maternity nurse, needs to have certain personality traits as mentioned above. This is definitely not the type of job that just anyone can do, but the rewards of doing it are plentiful. For one, you become someone who helps to secure better relationships between individuals and on a grander scale, are actually helping to increase the health of the community. Whether you are working in an urban or rural area, the choice to become a maternity nurse is not one to be taken lightly. As such, before starting on the many years of study and putting yourself through the process of clinical hours and the like, you need to think very carefully about whether this is where you see your career advancing. If it is, know that your contribution will be a very big one, as will your remuneration as an LPN to maternity nurse.