What Is a Neonatal Nurse Practitioner? - Video

A Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (NNP) works to care for newborns in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) of a hospital. They are registered nurses who have received advanced training in caring for NICU infants.

Job Description

Neonatal Nurse Practitioners, or NNPs, provide care to newborns with a variety of health care needs. It is most common for them to work in NICUs or neonatal intensive care units. They tend to newborns who are premature, who may be in respiratory distress or have other abnormalities. They are registered nurses who have received advanced training specifically in the care of newborns. They have specific training on caring and monitoring high-risk infants and work in conjunction with physicians.

Daily Duties

Neonatal Nurse Practitioners give individualized care and attention to infants as needed. They are also charged with educating the parents and families of their patients on ways to maintain the prescribed care. Specific duties will also include monitoring and providing specialized feeding and medication. NNPs will work to minimize the risk of infection, monitor incubators and concentrate on the general and daily needs of their NICU patients. These nurses will use their skills in physiology, pathophysiology and pharmacology, depending on the individual needs of their patients.

Work Setting

Neonatal Nurse Practitioners usually work in shifts as NICU infants require constant monitoring and care. It is common for NNPs to work three or four days of longer hours with two or three days off. They can work morning, noon and night. Neonatal Nurse Practitioners work primarily in facilities that cater to newborns. Facilities may include neonatal intensive care units, newborn follow-up clinics, pediatric clinics or specialty practices. NNPs work in collaboration with other physicians and specialists when caring for high-risk babies.

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