Certified Nurse Midwife Job Description, Key Duties and Responsibilities

By | September 20, 2023
Certified Nurse Midwife Job Description
Certified Nurse Midwives provide help to woman in giving birth, and care to babies.

This post provides detailed information on the certified nurse midwife job description, including the duties, tasks, and responsibilities they perform.

It also highlights the major requirements you may be expected to meet to be hired for the certified nurse midwife role.

What Does a Certified Nurse Midwife Do?

A Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM) is an advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) who specializes in primary and reproductive care for women and their babies.

They practice in hospitals and private practice medical clinics, birthing centers and attend at-home births, public health systems, or other types of clinics.

The certified nurse midwife job description entails providing assistance with births, promoting reproductive and primary care education, offering counseling,, and ensuring the health of women and their babies.

It also involves providing sexual health care as nurse midwives also see women for routine exams and are able to initiate all types of contraception.

Certified nurse midwives are allowed to prescribe medications, treatments, and apply therapeutic and diagnostic measures.

They are responsible for providing medical care to women from puberty through menopause, including care for their newborn (neonatology), antepartum, intrapartum, postpartum, and nonsurgical gynecological care.

They provide primary women’s health care with a focus on pregnancy, childbirth, the postpartum period, care of the newborn and the family planning and gynecological needs of women.

The certified nurse midwife duties also involve applying obstetrical and gynecological theoretical knowledge and hand skills; they follow clinical guidelines, policies, and procedures.

They are responsible for providing primary care to women, including timely ordering and accurate evaluation of diagnostic tests and management of minor complications.

They identify factors that indicate deviations from normalcy and provide follow-up services in accordance with the standards delineated in the Nurse-Midwifery Scope of Practice.

The certified nurse midwife work description also entails undertaking a comprehensive history and physical exam in an accurate and timely manner, as well as developing and implementing a plan of care with the patient, which is consistent with the clinical objectives of the multi-disciplinary obstetrical team.

It also involves providing in-patient obstetrical care for essentially healthy woman, including OB triage, labor management, delivery of the infant; repair of lacerations/episiotomies, management of the immediate postpartum period, and management of minor complications; as well as initiation of emergency care as needed.

Nurse midwives are responsible for prescribing appropriate treatments and medications from an approved formulary for the management of a client’s contraceptive needs and/or for specific medical problems.

They also apply initiative in identifying deviations from normal tendency and consult, co-manage, or refer patient as appropriate.

They follow established clinical guidelines in providing limited obstetric ultrasound as indicated.

They also serve as experts, providing individualized client teaching and counseling, utilizing the nurse-midwifery philosophy as appropriate.

Their role also involves instructing and supervising student nurse-midwives, family practice and OB interns, residents, medical students and nurses as assigned.

They also participate in a continuous, collaborative peer review process and in audits to conform to regulatory standards.

The CNM exercises a high level of independent judgment in managing patient care and assessing risk status.

They practice within a health care system that provides for physician consultation, collaborative management, and referral as indicated by the health status of the patient

Certified Nurse Midwife Job Description Example/Sample/Template

The certified nurse midwife performs various functions in providing quality primary healthcare for women throughout their lifespan.

The major tasks, duties, and responsibilities commonly carried out by certified nurse midwives are presented in the job description example below:

  • Responsible for providing and managing the care of women during labor and delivery
  • Ensures to obtain accurate medical, obstetrical, gynecological, and psycho-social history of the present pregnancy and observes signs of the member’s general and obstetrical health status
  • Responsible for carrying out complete physical examinations, including the pap smear, breast examination, abdominal examination, pelvic examination, and clinical pelvimetry
  • Responsible for documenting all findings of examinations, histories, and significant observations in the patient’s chart
  • Responsible for determining pregnancy status during gestation, fetal heart rate, and presentation and position of fetus
  • Applies knowledge to determine whether all findings are within normal limits
  • Orders appropriate laboratory examinations, including ultrasound, blood type, chest X-ray, CBC, urinalysis, Rh factor, and serology tests
  • Provides advance patient care by consulting with and obtaining orders from an obstetrician for any special care or diagnostic procedure and refers to other services as necessary
  • Obtains consultation and assistance from physicians as needed to institute preventative measures and detect abnormal conditions
  • Provides teaching, counseling, and guidance to individual members regarding their health care
  • Applies judgment to determine the need for social services, genetics or mental health services, and refers as appropriate
  • Provides assessment on patient’s general and obstetrical health status
  • Responsible for the provision of health supervisory services, care and family planning advice to women during antepartum and postpartum periods
  • Performs procedures such as abdominal palpation and ultrasound examinations to evaluate fetal status; estimate fetal weight, presentation and position, approximate station and fetal heart rate
  • Performs internal and external fetal monitoring and interpretation
  • Consults with obstetrician regarding abnormal findings
  • Determines patients’ degree of labor and whether they are to be hospitalized to labor and delivery unit
  • Conducts normal spontaneous vaginal deliveries independently
  • Provides assistance prior to cesarean sections and gynecological surgeries
  • Undertakes immediate care of the newborn
  • Provides prenatal care as well as gynecological care to women.

Certified Nurse Midwife Requirements – Skills, Knowledge, and Abilities for Career Success

If you are seeking the job of a certified nurse midwife, most employers or recruiters will require you to possess specific qualities and qualifications that will enable you to meet the organization’s obligations, objectives, and purpose for the role.

Shown below are major requirements, including abilities, skills, knowledge, and experience you will need to have to be eligible to access available certified nurse midwife positions with most organizations:

  • Education: CNMs require a minimum of Master’s degree and must be a graduate of an accredited school/university of nurse-midwifery with clinical experience
  • License and certification: They must possess a current Registered Nurse license (RN) in the applicable state and must possess certification by the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) or the ACNM Certification Council. They also require a current CPR certification, and current certification in Neonatal Resuscitation
  • Knowledge: They require advance knowledge in obstetrics, gynecology, and women’s health
  • They should also be credentialed at CHMC as an Allied Health member of the Department of OB/GYN, and certification in Limited OB ultrasound may also be required
  • Active listening and communications skills: Certified nurse midwives require great oral and written communication skills to work effectively with people and relate with patients. They must also be able to listen to patients with empathy and genuine care
  • Coaching skills: Their job description requires them to provide counsel and health education to patients, new moms, staff, interns, etc. hence they must be able to pass educative and informative messages in a clear and concise manner to all
  • Sound Judgment: They require this skill to apply initiative, consult with obstetricians, and refer patients when necessary
  • Collaborative skills: They must be able to work effectively in a team oriented and interdisciplinary environment
  • Compassionate: They also require a compassionate and caring attitude to deal with women who are in pain, and enjoy working with women from diverse backgrounds from teenage to menopause.


If you are a recruiter, HR manager, or employer needing to make an effective description for the role of a certified nurse midwife for your organization, you can apply the information provided in this post, including the sample job description.

It is more likely that you will attract the best qualified candidates to your job offer if you published a detailed work description for the available CNM job.

This post will also be beneficial to individuals who are interested in becoming a nurse midwife.

They will have their knowledge of the certified nurse midwife career increased as well as their ability to succeed on the job.

Did you find this post helpful in learning about what certified nurse midwives do? Please, leave a comment in the box below. You may also discuss your job description if you work as a nurse midwife.