Some people are just meant to work with young children. If you love to see babies grow, babble, and thrive, then there might be no better way to spend your working life. With that said, it's important to choose a career path that will be not only fulfilling but well-paid and sustainable as well.
Nursing is a great choice for compassionate individuals who want to work with babies. In a healthcare setting, parents and babies need extra support from people who understand their needs. As you complete your nursing education, you can consider specializing or becoming a nurse practitioner so that you will have the opportunity to work with babies on a regular basis.
It's important to be honest with yourself about what you want from your career. Nursing education involves a lot of time, energy, and persistence, no matter how far you take it, so you need to take the time to choose a career path you're really excited about. Becoming a nurse practitioner takes extra time, but it can be well worth the effort in the end. Here are 3 great nursing career paths for people who want to work with babies.
Emergency Nurse Practitioner
Working in an emergency setting can be stressful, but it's also a fulfilling career path that will allow you to help people in moments of great need. Some people work best in fast-paced environments and enjoy the challenges involved in providing emergency care.
Emergency nurse practitioners have more autonomy than emergency room nurses and can provide diagnoses and treatments for a range of patients. Although babies and children often come through the emergency departments at general hospitals, emergency nurse practitioners who want to work with young patients should seek jobs in a children's hospital.
Emergency NP Career Outlook and Salary
Demand for emergency NPs is high, especially in rural areas where there is a shortage of medical personnel. Because an NP can provide many of the same services as a physician, more hospitals are hiring them to provide both primary and emergency care.
NPs are highly trained medical professionals and the quality of care is just as high as the care provided by a physician. Emergency NPs can expect to make around $93,000-97,000 per year.
Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
For people who want to work with children all day, every day, becoming a pediatric nurse practitioner is a great choice. These professionals work with children of all ages, from infants to adolescents, offering general care and medical support for families. Well-child visits are extremely important for overall health and well-being, and nurse practitioners conduct many of these appointments.
Pediatric nurse practitioners can work in various settings, including pediatric offices, health centers, hospitals, and more. In addition to well-child visits, pediatric NPs diagnose and treat common and chronic illnesses in children. NPs who choose to specialize in pediatrics can specialize even further in areas like acute care, primary care, and mental health care.
Mental health in infants and young children is still a developing field, making it a great opportunity for NPs who want to work with babies. Infant mental health concerns take place in the period between 0-3 years of age when children first begin to develop social skills and emotional regulation. NPs specializing in this field can help patients intervene appropriately if a child is not developing as expected.
Pediatric NP Career Outlook and Salary
There is a critical need for more NPs to specialize in pediatrics, especially in underserved and rural areas. This means it's a great time to get into the field and make a difference. Currently, just 8% of nurse practitioners choose this specialty. Most pediatric nurse practitioners make $85,000-97,000 annually, depending on their experience.
Neonatal Nurse Practitioner
Those who prefer to work with the youngest of the young might do well as a neonatal nurse practitioner, caring for newborns. This specialty requires a compassionate individual who can withstand the highly emotional work of helping extremely sick young children. It is a high-pressure specialty that is perfect for people who want to help families get through those all-important first few months.
Most neonatal NPs work in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) and often work with premature newborns or those born with severe illnesses or birth abnormalities. Some also work in emergency rooms or labor and delivery departments.
Neonatal NP Career Outlook and Salary
There is currently a shortage of nurse practitioners specializing in neonatal care, which is expected to get worse through 2028. If you really want to make a difference in the lives of vulnerable babies, you can help by following this career path. Neonatal NPs make $94,000-125,000 a year.
Start Your Education Now!It takes years of specialized training to become an NP. If you are excited at the idea of helping babies and children get and stay healthy, then now is the time to get started. Healthcare organizations are facing shortages and are looking for NPs to help. Follow your skills and interests, and embark on an exciting career!