This website was developed and is maintained by the North Central Wisconsin Area Health Education Center.

Certified Nurse Midwife
A certified nurse-midwife (CNM) provides care to a woman during pregnancy, manages labor, delivers the baby, and cares for the newborn and mother. Currently, approximately five percent of all births in the United States are conducted by a certified nurse-midwife. CNMs generally take patients who, after a pre-screening, are not likely to have complications. An obstetrician is often used as a consultant for emergencies.

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Work Activities/Environment
A nurse-midwife provides education on nutrition, breast feeding, child care, and other information needed for a healthy mother and child. A CNM supervises the labor, provides pain medication if needed, and performs the delivery. The baby is evaluated for its health and then shortly thereafter released to a pediatrician's care.

CNMs are generally self-employed, and work in clinics, hospitals, or independent birthing centers. Hours vary since CNMs are always on call for the expectant mothers.

Academic/Special Requirements
High school students should study health, mathematics, biology, chemistry, social sciences and related courses. Nursing education includes classes in anatomy, physiology, chemistry, microbiology, psychology and related courses. Health and wellness subjects are emphasized, such as nutrition and basic care as well as gynecological care.

CNMs are registered nurses with a bachelor's degree who have completed a certification program which usually involves approximately twelve months of training. A master's degree program is also available, taking about 16 to 24 months. For those who are not already registered nurses, a 3-year combined RN/master's degree program is available in some areas where the nursing degree is obtained along with nurse-midwifery certification.

Educational Institutions
Marquette University
Southwest Wisconsin Technical College

Average $57,600

Professional Organizations
American College of Nurse-Midwives
8403 Colesville Rd., Suite 1550
Silver Spring, MD, 20910

American Nurses Association (ANA)
8515 Georgia Avenue, Suite 400
Silver Spring, MD, 20910
301/628-5000 or 800/274-4ANA (4262)

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