How to Become a Midwife?
Becoming a midwife is challenging and really important. It is because midwives are primary health care providers which serve women throughout the lifespan. They should be professional in performing physical exams, ordering laboratory tests as required, prescribing medications including the contraceptive methods, providing prenatal care, labor and birth care, gynecological care and health education/counseling to all women. The midwifery profession is better educated as certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) and certified midwives (CMs) because they have great opportunities in career as well as future.
Certified Nurse Midwife Salary
To earn the CNM (Certified Nurse Midwife) and CM you should involve graduate education which requires a Bachelors Degree or Registered Nurse with BSN for entry. In spite of the stages of the education, nurse midwifery will be advantageous once you earned your degree due to the salary figures.
In fact, a nurse midwife salary may vary based on the employer, area of specialty and education although basically the salary average is excellent. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ current Occupational Outlook Handbook states that the median annual salary for a nurse midwife is $107,460. The actual salary may vary depending on the specialization, years of experience, location and others.
Nurse Midwife Training Programs
There are some degree levels available for nurse midwife. So you need to decide the path based on your background. Just make sure to earn the program at the accredited school. Here are some nurse midwife training programs:
- Associate’s Degree Programs
The courses will include anatomy, nursing, microbiology, chemistry, etc. ADN is an early door to enter the early level staff nurse positions which will provide some medical experience in the field.
- Bachelor’s Degree Programs
Another option is BSN for continuing to the next level. You may also take an RN-to-BSN program which will educate you to work with individuals and communities with the general practice of nursing.
- Master’s Degree Program
This is an ultimate goal when you are focus on a nurse-midwife career. Earning an MSN may take around 18 to 24 months for a full time student. The coursework will be focused on teachings about labor and delivery, as well as health issues dealing with women.
- Doctoral Program
This level of education is required when you look for further step in your career. This degree will take you into leadership type roles and work toward diagnosing problems and solutions in the midwife profession.
There is also a certification needed, that is American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB) exam. It is a computer-based exam containing 175 multiple-choice items.
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How to Become a Midwife without a Nursing Degree
You may become a midwife without a nursing degree. You just need to get direct-entry midwifery such as LM (Licensed Midwife) or CPM (Certified Professional Midwife). Direct-entry midwives are midwives with professional training who provide the direct assistance and monitoring for women in delivering their babies during the childbirth, as well as with the prenatal and postnatal care.
How Long Does it Take to Become a Nurse Midwife
Based on the education levels, approximately you will need 8 years to become a nurse midwife with the following details:
- Associate’s Degree Programs (2 years)
- Bachelor’s Degree Programs (4 years)
- Master’s Degree Program (2 years)
- Doctoral Program
Online Midwifery School
As other modern school program, midwifery school also comes in online path. Although it is a very hands-on profession, there are some opportunities to get your education online whether it is partially or fully. With the online programs, students may complete their studies through online and conduct the clinical experiences around the local community. The BSNs also can be earned at many of online schools with basic studies and nursing curriculum.
Here are the examples of online nurse-midwifery school programs with the estimated cost.
- Old Dominion University ($538/credit hour): 100% online.
- Texas Tech University ($686/credit hour): 7 required visits.
- Frontier Nursing University ($565/credit hour): 2 required visits.
- Bethel University ($773/credit hour): 3 required visits.
- East Carolina University (NC/SC students only. Cost: $1,019/credit hour): 3 required visits.
Since becoming a midwife needs more practical and professional experience, make sure you get the right education degree and training to get the better future and experience.