Nurse Specialties: Women’s Health Nursing

Women's Health NursingWomen’s health nurses focus on diseases and conditions that are specific to females. This includes pregnancy, menopause, and other common conditions. Most are RNs with advanced certification and training, and some obtain advanced degrees in the profession. Women’s health nurses work in a variety of healthcare settings, including hospitals and home-health care. Although advanced degrees are not required for this career field, those with a Master’s of Science in Nursing are afforded more opportunities and often receive better pay.

What is Women’s Health Nursing?

Women’s Health is a specialized field of nursing in which professional RNs with advanced training care for he needs of females of all ages. They may work in any number of sub-specialties, but generally work in female-specific genres such as gynecological health, acute health conditions, disease management and prevention. There are two general levels of practice for professionals in this field: general nursing and nurse practitioner. Nurse practitioners obtain advanced degrees to manage and perform advanced care tasks for women.

Several agencies exist to support women’s health professionals and advance the needs of the profession. The Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN) is a popular labor association for nurses in this profession. For advanced practice nurses, the Nurse Practitioners in Women’s Health organization provides support and guidance.

Nursing School Curriculum for Women’s Health Nursing

Women’s health professionals are usually certified in specific areas of medicine that focus on this area of medicine. Some, but not all states require special certification to perform this job. However, all states require that the professional first earn RN designation. Most professionals in this career field obtain a 2-year degree or a 2 to 3-year diploma from a sponsored hospital program. Advanced practice nurses earn up to a Master’s degree in nursing or post-master’s certification.

Careers for Nursing School Graduates with Women’s Health Nursing Specialty

Many women’s health professionals work in hospitals, clinics, and doctor’s offices. They may also work in birthing clinics and other settings. Some nurses become home-health aides to work with at-home births and women who are unable to leave the home to seek health care.  The duties of women’s health nursing professionals may vary greatly, depending on the chosen specialty and work place. Generally, these duties include planning services, prenatal and postpartum care, menopause, specific disease control, substance abuse, education, and counseling.

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