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Medical students fulfill rigorous education and training requirements before they're considered baby doctors, including eight years of schooling and between three and eight years as an intern or resident. According to the Council of Pediatric Subspecialties, doctors who mainly focus on infants after birth may specialize in areas including pulmonary or emergency medicine, infectious diseases, neurology, endocrinology, allergy and immunology, critical care or cardiology. Others, like certified nurse midwives and certified professional midwives, offer pregnancy and after-birth care to babies and mothers.
Conception and Pregnancy Adviser
OB-GYNs specialize in women's health issues, pregnancy, childbirth and the reproductive system. They treat and advise patients throughout their pregnancies and are usually the doctor of choice when it comes to delivering babies. OB-GYNs are trained and licensed to handle any delivery situation, whether a routine, low-risk birth or a critical, high-risk scenario. The BLS reports that OB-GYNs made a mean wage of $212,570 per year, as of May 2013.
Critical Infant Caregiver
Maternal-fetal medicine specialists, or perinatologists, deal with high-risk pregnancies and deliveries. The Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine notes that MFM specialists care for pregnant women who have chronic health problems or complications during pregnancy. They also treat, monitor, and care for babies with growth problems or birth defects while they're still in the womb. According to a salary survey conducted in September 2011 by Medicorp, a physician recruiting company, physicians specializing in perinatology earned an average annual salary of $356,576.
Premature and Newborn Supervisor
Neonatologists typically work in Neonatal Intensive Care Units and care for full-term or premature infants. They often assist in high-risk delivery situations and handle technical procedures on infants, such as endotracheal intubation to help babies breathe. Some neonatologists oversee lower-risk infants while they're in hospital nurseries. According to a salary survey conducted between August and December 2013 by Profiles, a physician recruiting resource, physicians specializing in neonatology earned a mean annual income of $278,400.
Routine Check-Up Expert
Pediatricians provide general care to patients from birth until the age of 18. They examine their patients on a regular basis to ensure they're growing and developing properly. Pediatricians help prevent, diagnose and treat minor illnesses, diseases and injuries. They also provide guidance to parents or guardians on activities, disease prevention, hygiene and diet. The Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that pediatricians earned an average income of $170,530 per year, as of May 2013.
- Council of Pediatric Subspecialties: Pediatric Neonatology
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women's Health: Pregnancy
- Healthline Networks: Labor & Delivery: Types of Doctors
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Employment and Wages: Pediatricians, General
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Employment and Wages: Obstetricians and Gynecologists
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: What Physicians and Surgeons Do
- Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine: What Is a Maternal-Fetal Medicine Specialist?
- Medicorp: Physician Salary Survey
- Profiles: 2013-2014 Physician Salary Survey
- O*Net OnLine: Summary Report for Pediatricians, General