If you’re trying to take your nursing career to the next level and are interested in becoming a Certified Nurse Midwife, then you’re probably on the hunt for an easy guide to get you started.
Becoming a CNM offers a wide range of benefits, allowing you to hone into a field of nursing you love, and be better compensated for your efforts.
However, the process can be a bit technical and will involve a great deal of studying to get your final certification.
But don’t worry! We’re here to help you out.
We’re going to give you a simple but comprehensive guide on how to become a nurse midwife (CNM) in North Carolina.
We’ve divided the whole process into 4 easy steps to get started.
Stick around for some FAQs that you may find helpful as well.
Let’s get right into it!
How to Become a Registered CNM in North Carolina in 4 Steps
Here’s a brief rundown of all the steps you’ll need to go through to get registered in North Carolina:
Step #1: Meet All the Prerequisites
Step #2: Take a Master’s Degree in Nurse-Midwifery
Step #3: Pass the National Nurse-Midwife Certification Examination
Step #4: Apply for an APRN License from the North Carolina Board of Nursing
Let’s take a closer look at each stage down below,
How to Become a CNM in North Carolina Step #1: Meet All the Prerequisites
Before we get down to business, it’s best to first look at the prerequisites you’ll need to become a CNM.
A certification in nurse-midwifery is highly specialized and involves a great degree of focus on post and prenatal care.
This greater degree of technicality means that you’ll first have to master some basics before you can proceed.
To become a CNM, you’ll need to be a Registered Nurse (RN), for which you’ll need a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree to obtain.
If you are not yet an RN, you can read this simple guide on how to become an RN in North Carolina.
If you are an RN who graduated with an Associate’s Degree in Nursing (ADN), you can look for a school that accepts ADN graduates or opt for a bridge program that will make your education equivalent to a BSN.
There are also disqualifying factors that can prevent you from getting a CNM license.
Some disqualifying factors are:
- Conviction of a felony in any state of the U.S. or its territories
- Disciplinary action, conviction, or ongoing investigation for the past or current unauthorized practice of midwifery or medicine
- Misrepresentation on the CNM application form
How to Become a CNM in North Carolina Step #2: Take a Master’s Degree in Nurse-Midwifery
If you already have an RN degree, then the next step in the process is to gain a Master’s Degree in Nurse-Midwifery.
You have to make sure that your program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education (ACME).
If you’re looking for options in North Carolina, then East Carolina University in Greenville offers an accredited master’s and postgraduate degree in Nurse-Midwifery.
The Master’s takes around 2 years if you plan to do it full-time, but flexible part-time plans exist if you’re trying to manage the process with your job. They also offer online classes.
Although East Carolina University is the only ACME-accredited program in North Carolina, you can also check out other universities that may be offering CNM programs online.
The admission requirements of most universities include:
- BSN or its equivalent
- Active, unrestricted RN license
- Admission essay
- GRE score
- Letters of recommendation
- Minimum GPA
The Nurse-Midwifery course will give you expertise on post and prenatal care, from pregnancy to delivery to dealing with birthing complications.
Some main nursing areas you’ll be learning are:
- Prenatal care
- Monitoring of physical and emotional health during pregnancy
- Creation of a birth plan
- Family Crisis Care
- Midwifery Care During Labor
You will also be required to complete a certain number of hours of clinical exposure. The number of hours depends on the school but is more or less close to 1,000.
How to Become a CNM in North Carolina Step #3: Pass the National Nurse-Midwife Certification Examination
After you’ve completed your Master’s Degree in Nurse-Midwifery (or Master of Science in Nursing with a specialization in Midwifery), you’ll be allowed to sit for the National Nurse Midwife Certification Examination.
The exam is created and supervised by the American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB), which manages the Nurse-Midwifery examinations across the US.
To kick start the process, you’ll need to fill out the application form and mail it to the following address,
849 International Drive, Suite 120
Linthicum, MD 21090
Alternatively, the AMCB also allows for online applications.
In North Carolina, the exam is conducted at a variety of different locations such as Asheville, Charlotte, Durham, Fayetteville, and Gastonia.
When applying you’ll be offered a full list of all available examination locations in your state.
The exam has a total of 175 multiple-choice items, which you’ll be given 240 minutes to complete.
The passing score varies based on the average score of the cohort you’re appearing with, which means the percentage required will vary from year to year.
Several areas will be tested in the following amounts updated for 2023:
- Antepartum – 21%
- Intrapartum – 21%
- Postpartum – 18%
- Newborn – 10%
- Well Woman/Gyn – 19%
- Women’s Health/Primary care – 11%
If you’re looking for more guidance on how to apply, exam day procedures and syllabus information consult the AMCB Certification Exam Candidate Handbook.
How to Become a CNM in North Carolina Step #4: Apply for APRN Licensure with the North Carolina Board of Nursing
After completing the examination and receiving your passing certificate, the last step will be to apply for Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) licensure from the North Carolina Board of Nursing.
This involves completing the documentary requirements listed on the North Carolina Board of Nursing CNM page, which include:
- Your active North Carolina RN license or a multistate RN license from another compact state (information must first be submitted on the “Compact State Application“)
- The name, license number, and email address of your collaborating physician
- Practice information including practice name, address, office phone, and email
- Identification document
- Official transcripts from your CNM program
- A copy of your national certification from the AMCB
- Verification of your licensure biography if you were licensed or practiced as a CNM in other states
Applications can only be completed online, through the portal listed by the North Carolina Board.
If you have any pending malpractice investigations, then you will need to fill out this Claims Information Form with the particulars and upload it with your AMCB certification documents.
You’ll also have to pay a fee of $100 for the process.
If your application is accepted, you will finally receive your APRN-CNM license. Congratulations!
Frequently Asked Questions About Becoming a CNM in North Carolina
What does a CNM do?
A CNM or Certified Nurse-Midwife is a healthcare practitioner who is certified by the American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB) to offer specialized care to women, especially to mothers.
Monitoring the health of expectant mothers and their babies, assisting in the delivery process and recovery, and offering palliative care form the bulk of a CNM’s duties.
How much does the CNM process cost in North Carolina?
The CNM examination is handled by the AMCB and comes out to $500 if you’re applying for the first time.
The re-examination fee is lower though at $350, giving you a maximum of 4 tries.
You’ll also have to pay a processing fee of $121, with a separate application fee of $100 in North Carolina.
How much does a CNM make annually in North Carolina?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a CNM makes a mean wage of $113,890 annually in North Carolina, with significant growth prospects as you gain experience.
How long will it take to complete a CNM in North Carolina?
The master’s program takes up to 2 years to complete if you do it full-time. Preparing for the national exam and going through the licensing process can also take a few more months to a year to complete.
So there you have it, a complete look at how you can become a Nurse Midwife (CNM) in North Carolina, in just 4 steps!
While the process may be lengthy, the extra specialization allows you to hone into a field, which offers better job security and compensation.
Just think of how many women and their families you can help as well!
If you just follow our guide, you’ll have a sure roadmap for your journey and you won’t get lost.
Good luck with getting certified!