Newborn Care Specialist
What is a newborn care specialist?
A Newborn Care Specialist (NCS) is someone who spends the first 12-16 weeks of a child’s life caring for the delicate needs of a newborn, supporting a breastfeeding mother and empowering parents to feel confident caring for their newborn.
The Newborn Care Specialist title was adopted by the International Nanny Association in 2007.
Currently there are no legal requirements of any kind to be able to call yourself a Newborn Care Specialist. However, there are training programs available that are beginning to set standards in a highly unregulated industry.
Allison has personally taken an NCS course and has met with the creators of two of the top programs in the country. We recommend that even nannies with many years of newborn experience enroll in one of these programs.
Is a Newborn Care Specialist the same as a Baby Nurse?
It’s important to make a distinction between the terms newborn care specialist, night nanny and baby nurse.
A night nanny is usually just that. A nanny that wakes with the baby at night, feeds the baby and soothes it back to sleep.
To be considered a ‘baby nurse’ the nanny must be either an LPN or an RN. Baby nurses are generally hired to care for babies that need extra special medical attention outside of the hospital. Newborn Care Specialists can be experienced with certain monitors and can help with light medical care, but are not considered baby nurses.
Newborn Care Specialists are:
- Familiar with the behaviors, appearance and general care of newborns
- Often experienced working with preemies and multiples
- Well versed in helping to establish appropriate feeding and sleeping habits
- Well versed in multiple sleep conditioning methods that are supportive in each family’s values
- Independent and generally working with only minimal guidance from the parents
An NCS is responsible for duties directly related to the care of a newborn including:
- Active sleep conditioning practices
- Offering advice and education to new families in a factual, non-judgmental manner
- Offering a specific plan of action to achieve family goals
- Newborn laundry
- Newborn bottle cleaning, sterilizing and prep
- Recommendations on supplies or products when asked
- Helping parents set up and stock the nursery
- Supporting a breastfeeding mother
- Recognizing the signs of a potential health issue or post partum depression and taking appropriate action to help the parents seek medical help
Newborn Care Specialists are careful to stay within their scope of practice and not will not attempt to diagnose any conditions.
How does it work when I hire an NCS?
In general, Newborn Care Specialists live in the family’s home for the first 12-16 weeks. They work a variety of shifts that are decided on by the family.
Newborn Care Specialists are often booked months in advance, but sometimes also accommodate last minute requests.
They require a contract and a retainer.
Their hourly rates typically range from $25-$45/hour dependent on experience and level of job responsibilities.
The NCS is typically allowed to rest when the baby rests once all baby-related duties are completed.
According to East Coast Nannies’ standards they are considered a long-term placement.
If you think you’re interested in hiring a Newborn Care Specialist, please complete the family registration form!