2 answers

What is a day like for a pediatric nurse versus a neonatal nurse? What are some reasons one might choose one over the other (besides the age of the children)?

Asked Birmingham, Alabama

I'm very interested in neonatal nursing, but I have also considered pediatric nursing. #nursing #nurse #pediatrics #neonatal

2 answers

Zee’s Answer

Updated Saint Petersburg, Florida

You can do both . Start out in a pediatric nurse residency program and get experience dealing with all ages of children. During your rotations you will find out which one you like the best. Even when you become a NICU nurse you will float to other pediatric floors. The best way to see which area you like the best is to apply to pediatric internships or residencies.

Hi! I am interested in becoming either a neonatal nurse or a pediatric nurse, so this was a great question for me! I'm looking forward to more answers!

Teresa’s Answer

Updated Memphis, Tennessee

Dear Eryn, What a great question! I worked for a year as a pediatric nurse and then moved to work in the NICU. I like to care for babies who need more help with equipment, lines, drips... I think this is why I liked NICU initially-- But, after working in the NICU for the past 29 years- I think the best part is working with the family and helping them to care for their new baby- I love to teach the new family and help relieve their stress. I think it is very rewarding to see a baby who is just a pound or so at birth, to grow and thrive- We have an NICU reunion every year and get to see these NICU "graduates" as they grow. We don't recognize the children, because they change so fast, but we often recognize the mom and dad! It's so encouraging to see the results of your work. Many of our babies are here weeks or months at a time and we really get to establish a relationship with the families. That is the most rewarding part to me.

I did enjoy the time with the families as a pediatric nurse, but their stay was shorter and so we didn't get as close as you do with a family who has a premature infant.
I wish you the best of luck Eryn! I hope you find a place where you can really enjoy your work, because when you love your job it's so much easier to provide high quality care.

That's a really good answer! Thanks!:) I'm not sure if I want to become a neonatal nurse, or a pediatric physician assistant. What would you recommend? I really, really, love babies, and I do want to get close to the families I will be helping, but I also know that, A.) Physician Assistants get paid better (I think!!) and B.) PAs usually don't have to work on holidays, have more say in there schedules, etc. I like little kids, also, but I know if I just was in Pediatrics, it wouldn't just be little kids, I'd also be helping older kids and teens, and I'm not sure if that's what I really want to be doing my whole life. Any advice you can give me, I would really appreciate! Thanks!!