Throughout history mankind has come up with some wonderful inventions and innovations, but out of all the creations by far the most beautiful and precious is human birth. I first developed an interest in nursing and in particular midwifery years ago. I believe it is a great service within the health profession because of the privileged position to assist in human childbirth. The word midwife means with woman. Centuries before obstetricians delivered babies, midwifes assisted women in having at home births. But it was only formally established as a profession in the early 1900’s. A nurse-midwife is a registered nurse that specializes in midwifery. The job of midwife is to assist in family planning and birth control advice, provide general gynecological services (such as pap smears and breast exams), aid women in childbirth, and help women by providing prenatal and postpartum care. Nurse-midwives are required to have a Master’s of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree and pass the American College of Nurse Midwifery (ACNM) board examination to obtain certification.
In combination with a Master’s of Science in Nursing, midwives must attain particular certifications and educational requirements. Aspiring midwives must first obtain a Bachelors degree in Nursing (BSN) and become a registered nurse. In order to become a registered nurse candidates must successfully pass the NCLEX-RN exam. This is the RN licensure exam. This typically takes up to 4 years to complete. Candidates are then required to have a year or more experience in labor and deliveries. The Master’s of Science in Nursing program is offered only by colleges and universities and generally takes two academic years to complete. In order to enter this program, successful completion of the graduate school entrance exam (GRE) is required. The overall duration to become a nurse-midwife is seven years with an average cost of $145,000. With successful completion of the MSN program, prospective nurse-midwives are required to pass the ACNM board examination to become certified.
Once certified, nurse-midwives should find it easy to locate employment. Statistics show (Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition- Registered Nursing, 2009) that there will be a twenty-two percent increase by the year 2018 for registered nurses, with an emphasis for specialized nurses in inner cities, rural communities, and underserved areas. RN’s are anticipated to create close to 587,000 new jobs by the year 2016 (Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition- Registered Nursing, 2009). This is to due to their ability to work in a variety of places such as: private practices, hospitals, health departments, and birthing centers. At the moment there are seventy-nine jobs being offered on the career builder website for this profession. Companies typically look for nurse-midwives with one to three years’ experience (Midwife Jobs). For an entry level position the salary is $60,000-$82,000 a...