May 5 is International Day of the Midwife. ACM celebrates midwives for all they do each and everyday. There is indisputable evidence to prove that continuity of midwifery care is the gold standard of maternity care because it leads to the best possible outcomes for mothers and babies. This is well known by midwives and women who have been able to access this model of care, but it’s not well known by the general public. Worse still access to continuity of midwifery care remains very low across Australia. On this International Day of the Midwife we embrace the theme “Follow the data, Invest in Midwives”. We have the data, we know the benefits of midwifery continuity of care and we know that investing in midwives will lead to improved outcomes for women. It’s time for change.
Individual women should make informed choices about the model of maternity care they receive so it’s important that they understand their choices. ACM wants every woman in Australia to know that the decision is in their hands.
Care from the one midwife throughout pregnancy, birth and the postnatal period results in better satisfaction with the birth experience, greater likelihood of carrying to term, reduced birthing trauma for the woman and baby, an increased chance of breastfeeding successfully and better outcomes for babies. As a result it also costs the health system less! Providing access to continuity of midwifery care models will also help Australia avoid a massive increase in maternity funding as our birth rate doubles over the next four decades.
With a known midwife, women receive individualised care for their entire childbirth experience, but this model of care is utilised by a relatively small minority of people. ACM is committed to ensuring this evidenced based best practice becomes the norm in Australia’s maternity system.
ACM President Joanne Gray says, “ACM wants the best for midwives, mothers and babies so we want women to better understand their maternity choices and have the option to choose the best model of care for their individual needs.’
“Becoming a parent is one of the biggest changes you can make to your life and we want that moment to be even better, for even more women in Australia. We want every woman to emerge from her birth experience feeling well, strong and confident.”
ACM’s social media video campaign #choosemidwiferycare.
Continuity of midwifery care- the stats.
ACM President Joanne Gray 0413 319 869
The Australian College of Midwives is the peak professional body for midwives in Australia. Together we are working towards building a resilient midwifery workforce for the future by advocating for the profession at a government level, promoting the benefits of midwifery care to the wider community and ensuring midwives in Australia are supported with industry information, quality education, career development and personal support through all stages of their career.