Midwives and nurses sometimes describe their jobs as nothing less than a privilege to work for humanity. Their role is challenging and comes with much responsibility. A midwife or a nurse is a certified health care provider who assists women during labor, childbirth, and postpartum care. It is both a science and an art, requiring both the knowledge and expertise related to the field. A deep respect for human dignity and an intuitive understanding of a patient’s needs is essential for quality nursing care.
Nurses or midwives combine empirical data with personal knowledge to provide the best healthcare services. They are usually the first healthcare providers that people encounter, so the consistency of their initial evaluation, care, and treatment is critical. Notably, some midwives are trained nurses who have decided to change careers and have completed the required additional training. Others manage their way up through a variety of paths before enrolling in a licensed midwifery program. Some even enter the field of midwifery after working in a different field of nursing for a specific duration.
As a nurse or midwife, your qualification is the first step on the career ladder. It serves as a launching pad for a profession with a wide range of options. Many universities offer on-campus and online education programs to fulfill the growing need to hire more skilled nurses. However, those already working and want to upskill themselves in this field can prefer acquiring an online MSN degree for a more advanced clinical position.
CAREER PATHWAYS FOR NURSES AND MIDWIVES
Career pathways are resources that provide clarity, direction, and structure to help people grow their careers, manage their succession, and maximize their scope of practice. However, below we’ve listed some most lucrative career pathways available for nurses or midwives.
- Clinical Roles
Nurses under clinical roles work closely with patients or clients. Perhaps, a certified nurse-midwife is responsible for working with gynecologists and obstetricians in diagnosing and managing reproductive health issues. If you want to practice as a clinician, you have the following options:
a. Staff Midwife / Nurse
Providing support to mothers and families during conception, birth, and postpartum treatment is an additional responsibility for a Staff Midwife /Nurse. Usually, they assist in the labor process and prepare the expectant mother for labor and childbirth following the clinician’s guide.
b. Clinical Midwife / Nurse Specialist
A clinical midwifery or nurse specialist’s role in practice necessitates specialized knowledge and skills. It entails assessing, preparing, delivering, and evaluating treatment to patients in hospitals. They collaborate closely with medical and paramedical colleagues and are responsible for making adequate changes to the prescribed treatment choices. A CMS/CNS is likely to have a higher degree of experience than a staff nurse or midwife. Staff nurses and midwives are not required to acquire training at the same level as specialists.
c. Advanced Nurse/ Advance Midwife Practitioner
An Advanced Nurse Practitioner(ANP) or Advanced Midwife Practitioner(AMP) is a highly educated, experienced, and registered nurse responsible for providing clinical care to patients. Here advanced practice refers to a level of practice and is not related to a specialty or type of practice.
An ANP/AMP is further responsible for fostering fitness, providing healthcare interventions, and encouraging patients/clients to make healthier lifestyle decisions. They are specialized nurses responsible for providing healthcare services by applying clinical nursing/midwifery experience and critical thinking skills.
At the local, national, and global levels, the ANP/AMP positions are established in response to patient/client needs and healthcare service requirements. Also, they are in charge of referring patients with undiagnosed problems and have extensive clinical experience. Their role is to promote patient and client well-being and provide suitable healthcare interventions.
2. Management Roles
A nurse or midwife can work under three management positions, including Clinical Midwife / Nurse Manager I, II, and III.
a. Clinical Nurse Manager I
The Clinical Nurse Manager (I) is primarily responsible for providing clinical and professional leadership and growth to the nursing team. Other responsibilities include the development of nursing staff through in-service training, new staff orientation, and supervise student nurses where applicable.
b. The Clinical Nurse/Midwife Manager II
The Clinical Nurse/Midwife Manager (II) is in charge of the service’s efficient administration, financial control, and operational management. CNM (II) is further responsible for coordinating, assessing, preparing, delivering, and reviewing the resident treatment and quality of life. They ensure compliance with the Health Acts Regulations and certify that all applicable registrations and certification criteria remain up to date during their tenure.
c. The Clinical Nurse/Midwife Manager III
The CNM (III) occupies a critical position in the planning and growth of the services. However, some of the major duties of CNM (III) include ensuring regulatory enforcement and monitoring the quality of nursing care. He or She is also responsible for clinical and professional leadership and upholding the company’s values.
3. Education and Research
Clinical research is critical to the development of new therapies and the enhancement of patient care. It is where the research nurse’s role comes in. A midwife or nurse working in research and education is responsible for acquiring a detailed understanding of the research process and terminology. He or She is further required to have in-depth knowledge of the specialty under investigation.
Working in the capacity of education and research nurse involves communication, teaching and mentoring, management and organizational skills, etc. The role is indeed challenging, varied, and fascinating. While the principal investigator (PI) is ultimately responsible for every report, research nurses are often the ones who handle it on a day-to-day basis. Since research nurses can work alone at times, they must be able to prioritize and multitask.
Wrap up Nurses and midwives are responsible for delivering the best healthcare services to patients. As a midwife or nurse, you can opt for clinical, management, or education and research-based roles depending upon your education level, skills, and experience. You may also specialize in a specific field of healthcare for advanced career options. The acquisition of skills should be the underpinning priority for nurses’ and midwives’ career development.