Midwives hold the unique power to transform mothers’ lives before, during, and after they deliver a baby. Many mothers feel so compelled by their midwife that they, too, would like to become one. Though this process is not as easy as one would expect, there is a series of important steps you must take before becoming a midwife. Let’s take a closer look.
Becoming a midwife on any level requires you to attend college and receive your education in nursing. This is the first and most important step. And while this may sound challenging, it’s essential to understand that various programs help you obtain your bachelor’s in nursing regardless of your current circumstances or age.
Obtain a License
After completing your BSN program, your work isn’t done. You can’t begin using the degree until you pass the NCLEX exam, which makes you eligible to practice your skills in a clinical setting. Consider it the entry exam.
The NCLEX stands for the National Council Licensure Examination, which tests your ability to respond to clinical scenarios via computer exam. After successfully passing the exam, you can receive the necessary licensing to get a job in the field.
Gain Credible Field Experience
You must enter the nursing field to gain practical, real-life experience in the industry. Not every patient will be pregnant or postpartum, but all patients will help you sharpen your skills and refine your long-term career goals. Essentially, use this field experience to test your desire to become a midwife and help you focus on taking the next steps in the process.
Focus on Midwifery Accreditation
Take your experience and begin applying it toward midwifery education. You can do this alongside your work or take time away from work if finances allow it. Earning a master’s or doctorate degree through the ACME is your introduction to the midwifery field as a whole.
Here, you will work with the Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education to earn the necessary education and qualifications to help you specialize in mother-baby care practices. Depending on which program you enroll in and complete, this can take anywhere from 18 months to four years.
Pass Your Final Exam
Yes, there is one more final exam, and this is the one that certifies and recognizes you as a licensed and practicing midwife. The American Midwifery Certification Board will provide you with an exam that tests your practical abilities. Upon successfully passing this exam, you will be legally declared a certified nurse midwife. At this point, you can take on patients by opening a midwifery business or consider becoming a partner to an existing firm.
If you already have your BSN but are looking to branch out, consider taking the next step to becoming a midwife. It’s essential to note that how you use and apply your licensing is up to you, but furthering your career may benefit you down the road.