What is a Maternity Nurse?

Thinking of becoming a maternity nurse? Here’s some information about the role of a Maternity Nurse and the steps you’ll need to take to become one.

Maternity Nurse Job Description

The role of the Maternity Nurse is to fully support the parents after the birth. The Maternity Nurse is a great source of help and advice, not only about the development and wellbeing of the baby, but also that of the new mother. Maternity Nurses, encourage parents’ involvement and confidence in handling their new baby and promote a positive relationship between other siblings and the new addition.

A Maternity Nurse will help the mother from the time she leaves hospital until both mother and baby are settled into a routine at home. This is normally a period of between 4-8 weeks; however the amount of time a Maternity Nurse is booked for is flexible and will depend on individual circumstances.

Maternity Nurses are employed on either a daily or live in basis. A Maternity Nurse will be on call 24 hours a day for 5 or 6 days a week, however this can be flexible depending on the individual needs of the family.

It takes a special kind of person to become a Maternity Nurse. The role is very intimate and personal and requires somebody who is knowledgeable in caring for newborns, warm and very professional. The Maternity Nurse needs to know when to step in and help and when to allow the family time with the baby.

Typical Maternity Nurse duties include:

  • Provide emotional support to the family in dealing with the transition of having a new baby
  • Establishes a feeding routine with the baby (breastfeeding or using formula)
  • Either feed the newborn or take the newborn to the mother (or father) to be fed
  • Supports the mother and family to feel confident in handing the newborn
  • Change and settle the baby after feeds
  • Monitor the baby’s weight gain, growth and sleeping patterns
  • Many maternity nurse specials in multiple births and in some cases provide support to distressed parents, depressed mothers
  • Advise on the use of equipment

Maternity Nurse pay

Maternity Nurses are typically self-employed and are required to register as self employed with HMRC. The Maternity Nurses pay varies depending on experience, and the type of role they are doing and the qualifications they hold. The table below outlines the general salary guidelines for Maternity Nurses.

Salary Guidelines:

£140 – £180 gross per 24 hours Single Baby
£170 – £225 gross per 24 hours Twin Babies
£225 – £250 gross per 24 hours Triplet Babies
£14.00 – £20.00 gross per hour Days Only (Singles & Multiples)
£14.00 – £20.00 gross per hour Night Only (Singles & Multiples)

Training for becoming a Maternity Nurse

Many candidates that train to specialise in caring for newborns, may also be working as a nanny caring for a newborn along with older children, work within Children Centres working with parents with babies or are working within the health sector.

Basic requirements needed to become a Maternity Nurse (or care for newborn) include holding a Maternity Nurse Training qualification. Babyem offer the maternity nurse training qualification at level 3 and 4 through Open College Network. Candidates are also required to hold a Paediatric First Aid certificate and a DBS Check (police check).

Most agencies and parents will want to know that Maternity Nurses have experience caring for newborns for booking them. Babyem are unique in the fact that they provide a dedicated (optional) placement programme for individuals in order to help them to develop their skills, experience and confidence. Babyem work in partnership with multiple birth agencies such as TAMBA, Twins UK, Great Ormond Street Hospital and the National Childcare Trust.

Further Maternity Nurse Training 

Existing Maternity Nurses looking to develop their skills and gain recognition are encouraged to keep up to date with best practice. Babyem provide a range of advanced level maternity courses in areas such as sleep training, postnatal depression and many more!

Babyem provide accredited maternity nurse training courses in central London. To find out more about becoming a maternity nurse please contact us on: 0208 986 9008 email: info@babyem.co.uk.



The role of the Maternity Nurse is to fully support the parents after the birth. The Maternity Nurse is a great source of help and advice, not only about the development and wellbeing of the baby, but also that of the new mother.