Nurses who work in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) provide specialized care to premature and critically ill newborns. While a career as a NICU nurse can be challenging, it is highly rewarding to play a role in saving babies’ lives. Learn more about NICU travel nursing jobs below.
Most NICU nurses are staff registered nurses and care mainly for premature infants, along with those suffering from breathing problems, anemia, congenital heart defects. NICU nurses monitor newborns’ conditions and are also responsible for formulating plans to advance their progress.
With four different levels of care, a NICU nurse’s responsibilities will be wide-ranging, require quick thinking and a compassionate hand. On a daily basis, they will work with complex technology and perform difficult procedures. Nurses will spend more time with infants than any other member of the healthcare team.
NICU nurses are primarily employed by hospitals but may also work for medical transport companies or in the community, providing home care. Shifts are typically 12 hours, and most facilities require NICU nurses to work a variety of shifts, including nights, weekends and holidays.
The work environment is fast-paced and requires excellent communication skills to be able to convey complex medical information between staff and families. One of the most important traits NICU nurses possess is attention to detail.
Note: Basic life support (BLS) and advanced cardiac life support (ACLS) certification, as well as one year of clinical experience, are required for all nurses RNnetwork places.
NICU nurses must have a bachelor’s degree in nursing and have passed the NCLEX-RN. Most need experience in pediatrics and neonatal care, which can be obtained prior to graduation through an internship. Although not necessary, the National Certification Corporation offers additional certifications, including those in pediatric transport, low-risk neonatal nursing and electronic fetal monitoring.
Earning a masters’ degree and becoming a neonatal advanced practice nurse can create new job opportunities and increase your skills and chances for advancement.
Are you interested in traveling with RNnetwork? Check out our open NICU jobs.