Qualifications Needed to Be a Neonatal Nurse in the United Kingdom

Written by caro smith | 13/05/2017
Qualifications Needed to Be a Neonatal Nurse in the United Kingdom
It is an important responsibilty to care for babies in the neonatal unit. (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Daniel Lobo)

Babies in a neonatal unit have been born prematurely or sick, and require specialised care in their first few hours and days. It is imperative that knowledgeable, caring staff attend to them during this time period. If you think this is the calling for you, you will need to complete the proper channels to be qualified as a neonatal nurse in the U.K.


Nursing qualification starts at university, in either a diploma course or a degree course. The course is half theory and half practical experience.


As part of the university course, you will be placed in hospital and community settings in your local area.

Time Commitment

A full-time diploma course will take three years to complete. A degree course will take between three and four years to complete.


You will choose your neonatal speciality after one year of a Common Foundation Programme, an introduction to the basic principles of nursing.

Residence Qualifications

You must be a U.K. resident for at least three years before you are permitted to apply for either a diploma or a degree nursing course.

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