Job Description of a Nursery Nurse
The Nursery Nurse should ideally be a Registered Nurse (RN), or an individual with a Bachelors of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree; virtually all hiring posts for Nursery Nurses require this (Nursery Nurse, incidentally, is the current term used in Great Britain; in the United States, the position is known as Newborn Nursery Nurse). The NN is naturally accountable for the health of the child for whom she cares, but her role in the child’s development is also substantial.
A Nursery Nurse or Newborn Nursery Nurse is not only a medical professional, but also an assistant and advocate for a child in its early years (sometimes, if the family is able to afford one, the position is a live-in job). She assists the child not only in health problems and illnesses, and the development of healthy habits, but also in social skills (such as sharing and cooperation), physical development (fine and gross motor skills), intellectual cognition, creative abilities, emotional awareness and self-confidence.
She functions as nurse, teacher, advocate and “childhood expert.” A foundation in early childhood education is highly desirable in this profession.
Training courses for Nursery Nurses
Post high school (and you hopefully did well in mathematics and such sciences as biology and chemistry, as these are mainstays of the nursing profession), you should at college level seek out a BSN degree or Masters of Science in Nursing (MSN) program. Enroll in a nursing program that allows you to complete at least a Bachelor’s degree or an Associates Degree in nursing as well as the necessary classes for an RN classification. The Master’s degree program, is even more desirable as virtually all competitive (and well-paying) job openings for Nursery and Newborn Nursery start at this level.
As you move into the BSN or MSN program, one of the qualifications for consideration in any nursing job is your clinical experience of 1,000 to 4,000 hours (the latter is ideal to make you competitive in the nursing job market). This is where Nursery/Newborn Nursing is probably most beneficial for those who want to remain in child care, as it provides many hours of clinical experience with young children, but one does not always need a Bachelor’s degree in order to work under supervision in this field.
Working As a Nursery Nurse for Clinical Experience
An inexperienced individual can still work as a Nursery Assistant while enrolled in a nursing school, although Nursery Assistants seeking internships will be competitive only with an accredited nursing program in their future, either near completion or at least mid-way. Frequently, assistants are not hired per se; they themselves arrange an internship or other suitable placement within a nursery, home or child care facility.
Ideally, both a Nursery assistant and Nursery Nurse should possess an Associate degree in Child Care, Learning and Development.
Nursery Nurses and Newborn Nursery Nurses are required, in addition to their nursing school completion, to be registered with the state in which they work, and achieve their NRP within the first few months of employment.
The NRP, incidentally, is a training course separate from the BSN and MSN, but one that is vital for the Nursery Nurse who may find herself in a situation where she must revive a choking or non-responsive infant or child. NRP stands for Neonatal Resuscitation Program, and every nurse or doctor who works with the newborn must achieve competence in this technique.
Once you have completed your BSN and achieved the status of RN, specialization programs are open to you for further training in Newborn Nursery work, and you can further your education and experience as you complete an MSN program.
Job Outlook and Salary
Newborn Nursing (Nursery Nursing) is seeing a resurgence in recent years, according to the Bureau of Labor/Statistics. They share a “favorable” job outlook with most other positions requiring an RN certification, and a growth potential up to 27% from 2008 to 2018 (based, no doubt, on the ever-increasing population of younger parents requiring child and nursery care). Average median salary would fall at $67,720 approximately.
The training courses for Nursery Nurse should be your first step to a lively and rewarding career of caring for the young.