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NNP and NCNS in Practice


Neonatal Nurse Practitioners provide care to low and high-risk neonates, on a continuum from well infants to infants with acute and chronic health problems, and their families, in a variety of health care settings. These settings may include level II or III neonatal intensive care units (NICU), well newborn areas, intermediate care units, NICU follow-up clinics, and other community based settings. The NNP manages a caseload of infants in collaboration and consultation with other health care providers. Other aspects of the NNP role may include staff and parent education, consultation, and research.

The Neonatal Clinical Nurse Specialist provides consultation, education, integrating evidence-based practice, and leadership in all areas of neonatal care. The neonatal CNS serves as an expert clinical resource for nurses, other health care providers, and families. The neonatal CNS develops educational programs for professionals and parents and collaborates to develop and evaluate unit patient care standards.


Neonatal Nurse Practitioner graduates are eligible to take the National Certification Corporation (NCC) Neonatal Nurse Practitioner certification examination.

Neonatal Clinical Nurse Specialist graduates are eligible to apply for certification as a neonatal acute and critical clinical nurse specialist (CCNS) from the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN) certification corporation.