Labor and delivery (LD) nurses provide care to women and their newborns during the antepartum, intrapartum, postpartum and neonatal stages. They provide support and monitor vital signs of the mother and baby during birth and deal with any potential problems. They may also provide support and education to mothers and their families after giving birth. LD nurses are found in hospitals, clinics and physician offices, and maternity or birthing centers.
Main Job Tasks and Responsibilities
A labor and delivery nurse must possess excellent critical thinking skills and an ability to make decisions quickly using good professional judgment. Each woman who is admitted to the labor and delivery unit has at least one baby who also becomes the patient of the nurse. The nurse must be able to recognize complications and act quickly in order to stabilize the situation and communicate with the patient, the patient’s family, and the appropriate physicians and specialists in order to ensure a safe and healthy delivery
- Independently determine and implement proper emergency interventions within scope of practice after identifying maternal and/or fetal distress.
- Administer many complex medications via various routes.
- Assist physicians and anesthesia providers with complex procedures such as insertion of internal monitors, placement of epidural catheters, placement of invasive monitoring lines, and induction of general anesthesia.
- Assign duties and delegate patient care to other registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, operating room technicians, and medical assistants.
- Serves as preceptor for all levels of nursing students.
Key Competencies and Characteristics
Labor and delivery nurses care for women and their infants during labor and childbirth. They are responsible for assisting, supporting and educating women during the four stages of delivery: antepartum, intrapartum, postpartum and neonatal.
- Providing support for the mother during labor
- Monitoring the fetal heart rate, and mother’s vital signs
- Measuring the strength and timing of contractions
- Administering medications and performing diagnostic tests
- Consulting with physicians and other members of the care team
- Assisting with inducing labor
- Coaching the mother during delivery
- Identifying and assisting with complications
- Assisting with various procedures, including Cesarean sections
- Monitoring and performing tests on newborns
- Providing education and support to mothers and families after delivery
Key Competencies and Characteristics
- Identify patients’ age-specific needs and alter care plans as necessary to meet those needs.
- Provide post-mortem care.
- Perform approved therapeutic or diagnostic procedures based upon patients’ clinical status.
- Evaluate patients’ vital signs and laboratory data to determine emergency intervention needs.
- Administer blood and blood products, monitoring patients for signs and symptoms related to transfusion reactions.
- Administer medications intravenously, by injection, orally, through gastric tubes, or by other methods.
- Must pass pre-employment examination.
- Designated and/or Random Drug Testing required.
- Background and/or Security Investigation required.
- Must be proficient in written and spoken English
Education and Experience
- Candidates must have a bachelor’s, associates or diploma degree in Nursing.
- Full unrestricted Registered Nurse state Licensure, Certification, or Registration required
- The ideal candidate will have at least have one year of recent Labor & Delivery RN experience
- Employment is conditional upon passing a drug test and background check
- Current TX or any state Compact license – American Heart Association ACLS, PALS, BLS, NRP or STABLE certifications