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The Credential CNM and CM

Certified nurse-midwives are registered nurses who have graduated from a nurse-midwifery education program accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education (ACME) (formerly the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) Division of Accreditation (DOA)) and have passed a national certification examination to receive the professional designation of certified nurse-midwife. Nurse-midwives have been practicing in the U.S. since the 1920s.

Certified midwives are individuals who have or receive a background in a health related field other than nursing and graduate from a midwifery education program accredited by ACME. Graduates of an ACME accredited midwifery education program take the same national certification examination as CNMs but receive the professional designation of certified midwife.

See how the CNM and CM credentials compare to other midwifery credentials in the United States.

The American Midwifery Certification Board(AMCB) [formerly the ACNM Certification Council (ACC)] administers the national certification examination for CNMs and CMs. The Individuals who pass the AMCB national exam are granted either the credential CNM or CM.  Participation in the Certificate Maintenance Program and recertification every five years are mandatory for active certification.  For more information about the national certification exam, contact AMCB at 849 International Dr., Suite 205, Linthicum, MD 21090, phone: (410) 694-9424, fax: (410) 694-9425,

Legal Recognition

Laws and regulations governing the practice of midwifery are rapidly changing. Certified Nurse-Midwives (CNMs) and Certified Midwives (CMs) are regulated on the state level, thus professional practice and interaction with other health care professionals, such as physicians, can vary from state to state. CNMs are legally recognized to practice in every state in the US and in the District of Columbia. CMs are currently legally recognized to practice in New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Delaware, Maine and Missouri.

For individual state statutes and regulations, check with the regulatory agency in each state. For CNM practice, this is usually the state board of nursing, but also may be the board of medicine, the board of midwifery, or the state department of health or public health. For CMs it can be the Board of Midwifery, the Board of Medicine, or the Department of Health.

Visit the State Resource Center for information about state laws and regulations.
American College of Nurse-Midwives
8403 Colesville Rd. Ste. 1550 Silver Spring, MD 20910
Phone: 240.485.1800 Fax: 240.485.1818
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