4 Things To Know Before Becoming a Pediatric Nurse

A pediatric nurse is a registered nurse who is a caregiver to children. They work in the children's wings of hospitals, clinics, private practices, or schools as an in-house nurse. Although there is no regulatory requirement for a nurse to be certified as a pediatric nurse, it helps in improving job prospects. 

Pediatric nurses handle patients who are children. They are in the age group of infancy to teenager. In their formative years, children are confused and scared. Caring for them requires soothing reassurance and encouraging the child to be brave when faced with health issues. They provide information and education to the parents to prevent diseases and raise a healthy child. 

Nursing aspirants passionate about children’s health can have a look at pediatric nursing practice questions online. If you are one of them, check a list of four things that will help in your journey as a pediatric nurse: 

  • Education and job prospects

Pediatric nursing is a specialization. After completing the education and licensure requirements to be a registered nurse, one can choose a specialization in pediatrics. Working in the children’s wing under an experienced pediatric nurse and assisting children’s physicians helps one get a practical understanding of clinical knowledge. 

The percentage of nurses who work in pediatric health has declined sharply in contrast to the number of children and adolescents in the country. The workforce gap creates a demand for qualified and experienced nurses in pediatric health wings. 

  • Pediatrics Telehealth

Given social distancing protocols during the pandemic, pediatrics witnessed a rise in the adoption of telehealth services in patient-care management. The vaccination of children was scheduled for a later stage. However, access to clinical consultation and regular check-ups needed to be effective virtually. Pediatric nurses are the first specialized nurses who started monitoring their patients through virtual consultations in the prime of the pandemic. 

Registered nurses or nursing aspirants looking to specialize in pediatrics need training in telemedicine to improve the quality of virtual consultations and patient experience. Through real-time video calls, nurses can engage the parent and family members of children in guidance and counseling to manage health at home. 

Pediatric nurses can handle telehealth services by training on digital toolkits, webinars, learning modules, and hands-on training to implement telemedicine. Nurses looking to add pediatric telehealth expertise to their resume can develop these core competencies:

  • Establish a connection through virtual platforms
  • Handle communication channels
  • Patient safety through telehealth
  • Monitoring diagnostic reports through telehealth medium
  • Technical terminology
  • Managing passwords and data security
  • Ethical practices that are required to manage patient care through telehealth
  • School Nurse

A school nurse ideally specializes in pediatrics and handles the health issues of school-going children. This role is essential to ensure the school students’ attendance for academic achievements.  

As a pediatric nurse working in a school, one is responsible for surveillance of students' health diseases management, emergency handling, behavioral aspects affecting health, and periodical health education like first aid and CPR training for adolescents. 

  • Challenges facing pediatric nursing

Nursing and healthcare provider roles are among the challenging professions around the globe. Pediatrics is a notch up in the intensity of challenges as they handle little adults; they are individuals in every respect and deserve as much privacy as adult patients. A pediatric nurse needs to cajole and distract a child when they get their shots. Added to all these matters, there are further challenges the discipline of pediatric nursing faces and that future nurses should be aware of. A list of a few such challenges cited by the Data Resource Center For Child and Adolescent Health is given here: 

  • Twenty percent of the child and adolescent population have special healthcare needs and account for the 80% of funds earmarked for pediatric health. 
  • There are healthcare gaps in areas in need of children’s health
  • Problems of overweight and child obesity in children are increasing with a decline in healthy lifestyle habits
  • Birth defects are the second leading cause of infant mortality

A pediatric nurse has to understand these challenges holistically and follow guidance to manage them. Learning from the academics, best practices shared through nursing journals and seminars, mentor-led programs, and community participation will help future pediatric nurses to stay in alignment with information. 

Future of pediatric nursing jobs

It is iterated that apart from parents, pediatric nurses play a vital role in a child’s health management. Children form connections with their pediatric nurses as a bond that most cherish throughout their adult life. Few nurses take up this specialization for this simple reason. 

Industry-wise, pediatric nurses can always find competitive positions in healthcare facilities owing to demand and supply gaps. The jobs of pediatric nurses pay competitively and currency enjoys a median pay of $75600 to attract talent. 

Certifications in pediatric nursing

The Pediatric Nursing Certification Board (PNCB) offers certifications that are advantageous to registered nurses looking to specialize in this discipline. It requires a registered nurse to gain experience of a minimum of 1800 clinical hours in providing patient care in the last two years. 

There are sub-specialization certifications in pediatric health governing acute, primary, and mental health care provided by the same board. 

The American Nurses Credential Center also offers certification in pediatric nursing that can aid in improving career trajectory. 


Pediatric nurses care for the most vulnerable patient population. Children are susceptible to multiple health hazards and pediatric nurses play a vital role in keeping them at bay through active education imparted to patients. Their nature of work often results in occupational burnout that is difficult to avoid for even the toughest kind. 

Taking regular breaks, practicing a healthy lifestyle and mindfulness is key to combating work-related stress. To distract children through playfulness while critically thinking on their feet for the clinical response, pediatric nurses are supposed to provide is a mentally-exhaustive feat. It can be accomplished only when someone is tough from within and soft-spoken from the exterior. If patience, endurance, and empathy are your inherent capabilities and you are passionate about helping children heal, then the pediatric nursing career option should be explored.