Taking care of a newborn baby takes a lot of energy, patience, and experience – all things that new parents may be struggling with when they first welcome a new bundle of joy into their lives. Fortunately, there are trained and caring professionals who specialize in newborn care and can lend a helping hand during those challenging early days.
A newborn care specialist differs from a baby nurse or nanny in a few distinct ways, so it is important to understand these differences so you can hire the best candidate for your family. Here is an overview of the certified newborn specialist education and training requirements, plus how you can become a newborn care specialist to help families with various baby-related tasks.
What Is a Newborn Care Specialist?
A newborn care specialist is a childcare professional with advanced and in-depth newborn care training. There are newborn care specialist training programs that you can pursue to take your love of working with newborn babies to the next level.
Parents and caregivers often choose to hire a newborn care specialist instead of a traditional nanny or baby nurse because this specialty designation gives parents extra peace of mind and employees an advantage over the competition. To become this type of specialist, you typically need to complete either online or in-person continuing education coursework from an accredited institution.
Typical Duties of a Newborn Care Specialist
A newborn care specialist is a wonderful asset for first-time parents and any caregivers or guardians who find themselves overwhelmed with juggling the care of a newborn with their other kids, work, or miscellaneous obligations. Many parents are looking for real experts who know all the best tips and tricks of newborn care and not just another babysitter.
Here are some of the most common responsibilities of a newborn care specialist:
- Educate parents about newborn care
- Help with breastfeeding issues
- Handle feedings and diapering
- Address umbilical and circumcision care
- Get the newborn on a regular nap and nighttime sleep schedule
- Help a mother through postpartum depression
- Swaddling, soothing, and infant massage
- Assist with nursery setup and shopping
- Help other siblings adjust to the new baby
- Clean baby-related messes, bottles, bedding, and toys
- Handle nighttime waking so the parents can sleep
How to Become a Certified Newborn Care Specialist
There are various training and certification options available if you are interested in becoming a certified newborn care specialist. Newborn care specialist education is offered through the Newborn Care Specialist Association (NCSA), which is a volunteer-run nonprofit organization that offers scholarships for professional training and to support families who urgently need newborn care help but cannot afford it.
There are NCSA-approved training courses that meet the organization’s high standards and are approved for certification. For example, childcare professionals can sign up for the training academies at Newborn Care Solutions, Cuidando Angeles, the Newborn Care Training Academy, or Gentle Ventures. There are foundational certifications, advanced certifications, and premier certifications available based on the amount of coursework completed.
Here are a few of the requirements that you will need to meet to become a newborn care specialist:
- Complete 2,000 verifiable hours of caring for newborns (both daytime and nighttime care)
- Complete various courses, such as basic lactation management and perinatal mood disorders
- Pass a 100-question, multiple-choice, online exam
- Complete CPR certification
- Submit a background check
Get Hired After You Become a Newborn Care Specialist
If you want to set yourself up for long-term success as a childcare provider, completing a newborn care specialist training program is an excellent idea. This is a relevant certification that you can list on your resume and discuss with potential employers during the interview process.
To find your dream job, Pavillion Agency can connect you with families looking for newborn care specialists who have advanced education and training. Complete our application form to tell us more about yourself and your newborn experience!