Provides health-related education and advocacy to various stakeholders involved in the patient's life, Develop health-related policies and procedures, Records accurate records for the interdisciplinary team, Refers patients to other staff or services for a variety of developmental, social, and mentla health support, Acts as a liaison between family, educators, external health and advocacy organizations as well as the medical team, Researches and recommends modification of educational or workplace programming and roles. Developmental disability nurses are one of a number of healthcare professionals who provide important services to developmentally delayed patients and are tasked with assisting patients with eating, teaching language and movement skills, and more. This will vary from employer to employer, however. PLEASE NOTE: The contents of this website are for informational purposes only. This entails caring for newborns, children, and adults who suffer from a wide range of disabilities which include Down syndrome, autism spectrum disorder (ASD), cerebral palsy, Fragile X syndrome, and other developmental disorders. In order to be eligible for certification, you must meet the following criteria: Rates of autism in America are higher than they've ever been before and only continue to climb. Certification articulates that you have specialized knowledge in the field and with regard to disabilities and related conditions. RegisteredNursing.org does not guarantee the accuracy or results of any of this information. Becoming a Developmental Disability Nurse. Where Do Developmental Disability Nurses Work? While standards of preventative care have risen over the past generation, resulting in less individuals with developmental differences and special needs, diagnostic tools for genes and behavior have vastly increased the amount of knowledge that we have about best treatment and outcomes for patients with special needs, resulting in the need for nurses who are highly skilled, certified and most of all compassionate toward their chosen patient population. Developmental disabilities nurses specialize in providing nursing care to people who have developmental and mental disabilities. As previously stated, nurses with more experience often find the role of nursing individuals with special needs to be a fulfilling career choice. Nurses may also work or volunteer as community advocates and points of contact for families of patients in their childhood years, teens or as adults. Many nurses receive a mileage stipend as there is often a home-care component to the job. Developmental Disability Nurse. Developmental Disability nurses work primarily in patient-facing roles, either in the clinic, in the community, with families or possibly in the group home or institutional setting. At present, the average salary for a Developmental Disability Nurse ranges from $42,000 to $86,000 depending on location, experience and qualifications. What Is a Developmental Disability Nurse? Tasks commonly carried out by developmental disability nurses may include: Developmental disability nurses generally care for patients in the following environments: All nurses should be compassionate, empathetic, and patient. Like many other nursing specialties, developmental disability nurses always must first become RNs by graduating with either an ADN or BSN degree from an accredited academic institution. Known also as a Special Needs nurse, the Developmental Disability nurse works with patients or populations that have developmental disabilities such as Autism Spectrum Disorder, Down Syndrome, Fragile X syndrome, cerebral palsy and many other developmental disorders. Nurses must work for two or more years with patients that have developmental or intellectual disabilities prior to becoming eligible for certification through the Developmental Disabilities Nurses Association (DDNA). Home / Nursing Careers & Specialties / Developmental Disability Nurse. The Developmental Disability Nurses Association represents the organizational body that grants certifications, developmental disability nurses. Some nurses who work with the special needs population do choose to pursue teaching, administration and policy work - however most jobs are patient-focused. Have a minimum of 4,000 hours of active developmental disabilities nursing practice as an RN in any of the following roles: practicing nurse, nurse administrator, nurse educator, or nurse consultant.