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How to Become a Midwife in Indiana

The occupation of nurse midwife is closely associated with helping women have a healthy delivery and birthing process in the setting of their choosing, like a home, but these specialists also provide primary care as well as reproductive health services, according to the Indiana Center for Nursing. In fact, certified nurse midwives, who are individuals who have an education in nursing followed by graduate-level training in the nurse midwife specialization, are considered primary care providers by federal law. The Indiana Center for Nursing reports there are approximately 84 certified nurse midwives practicing in Indiana, in settings as varied as birth centers, homes, hospitals, and private practices.

Educational Requirements to Become a Midwife in Indiana

To become a certified nurse midwife (CNM) in Indiana, one typically must complete a master's degree program in nursing (MSN). The Indiana Center for Nursing reports that approximately 82 percent of certified nurse midwives nationwide have a master's, or even a doctoral, degree. In Indiana, a graduate-level education provides nurses with advanced coursework in areas such as health assessment, pathophysiology, and pharmacology. Nurses pursuing an MSN degree in midwifery may also take courses such as:

  • Midwifery Care
  • Nursing Research Design and Methodology
  • Primary Care of Women Across the Lifespan
  • Issues and Policies in Healthcare

Additionally, students need to complete clinical or practicum hours that give than hands-on experiences working with female patients under the direction of a qualified nurse, doctor, or healthcare practitioner. As well, they may be required to do research, understand statistics, and become involved in an evidence-based project that brings together their interests and skills.

In Indiana, students can apply to the midwifery MSN program available through the University of Indianapolis, the only available MSN midwife program in the state, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). This program has both part- and full-time options, but the degree must to be completed within six years. It is accredited through the Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education, and includes both hybrid and online learning components. Students who already have a master's degree in nursing can pursue the post-master's option available in nurse midwifery from the school.

Licensing Requirements to Become a Midwife in Indiana

To become licensed as a nurse midwife in Indiana, there are several steps that need to be completed. This includes submitting an application with the required fee to the state board of nursing, having proof of an active and unrestricted registered nurse (RN) license, and graduating from an accredited midwifery school. Additionally, applicants need to show they have passed the certifying exam given by the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM).

Nurse midwife licensing expires on October 31 of odd-numbered years. As of August 2015, the cost to renew is $50 every two years. Nurses midwives granted prescriptive authority also need to renew every two years and will have associated fees related to that renewal.

According to the state, continuing education (CE) hours are not needed for renewal of the limited license to practice as a nurse midwife, although nurse midwives are expected to maintain the skills and abilities necessary to perform their duties. Those advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) who also have been granted prescriptive authority, however, do have to complete 30 hours of continuing education, with at least eight specifically in pharmacology.

Salary and Job Outlook

In Indiana, nurse midwives earned a mean annual wage of $76,390 in 2014, according to BLS data. Although this is significantly lower than the mean annual wage of $97,700 earned by nurse midwives nationwide, it is still much higher than mean annual wage earned nationwide for all occupations combined -- $47,230, as of May 2014.

Job opportunities for nurse midwives are expected to grow by 10.9 percent in Indiana from 2012 to 2022, reports Projections Central. This could result in roughly 70 new positions becoming available in the state during this time. Nationwide, the picture looks even brighter. The BLS estimates that, across the country, opportunities for nurse midwives will increase 29 percent from 2012 to 2022. This growth could result in 1,700 new job opportunities in the field. Factors contributing to this growth include:

  • More people having access to health insurance under the Affordable Care Act
  • More practice authority being given to APRNs, which include nurse midwives
  • APRNs being able to provide primary care

Job demand for APRNs is expected to be particularly strong in rural and underserved areas, according to the BLS. However, nurse midwifes are needed all over the county, to assist women in need of services related to reproductive health, maternity, or even primary care.


Sources:

  1. College Navigator, National Center for Education Statistics, Aug. 19, 2015, http://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?s=IN&p=51.3401+51.3807
  2. Continuing Education Requirements, IN.gov, www.in.gov/pla/2492.htm
  3. Fee Schedule, IN.gov, http://www.in.gov/pla/2501.htm
  4. Information Pertaining to Nurse Midwives, IN.gov, http://www.in.gov/pla/2504.htm
  5. Long-Term Occupation Projections, Projections Central, https://www.projectionscentral.com/Home/Index
  6. May 2014 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates Indiana, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_in.htm
  7. May 2014 National Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates United States, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_nat.htm#00-0000
  8. Nurse Anesthetists, Nurse Midwives, and Nurse Practitioners, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Jan. 8, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/nurse-anesthetists-nurse-midwives-and-nurse-practitioners.htm#tab-6
  9. Nurse Midwives, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2014, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes291161.htm
  10. The Certified Nurse-Midwife, Indiana Center for Nursing, http://www.ic4n.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/CNM-final.pdf
  11. University of Indianapolis Graduate Nursing Nurse-Midwifery, University of Indianapolis, January 2015, http://www.uindy.edu/documents/Nurse_Midwifery_pattern_Sheet_.pdf

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