The Australian College of Midwives (ACM) announces Alison Weatherstone is the successful candidate as our new Chief Midwife (formerly Principal Midwifery Officer role).
Alison joins us from the Torres & Cape Hospital and Health Service in Cairns where she was the Director of Midwifery. Alison is also currently the Queensland Branch Chair of ACM. She has extensive experience in midwifery management and leadership in Queensland where she has been actively involved in workforce initiatives, in particular supporting First Nations Midwives and working to ensure access and equity for all women to safe maternity care. Through her career, Alison has frequently worked in rural and remote areas of Australia due to the influence she can have on the provision of maternity care, in particular continuity of carer and midwifery-led models of care. She is a subject matter expert in the Weipa birthing implementation – bringing birthing closer to home for women of the Western Cape and is committed to the future direction of Birthing on Country and what it means and represents to First Nations families. Alison’s drive for universal, safe maternity care stems from a trip to Kenya during her undergraduate Nursing degree, where she spent 6 weeks at a primary health clinic. She went on to obtain her Postgraduate Diploma in Midwifery, returning to Africa multiple times.
Alison has broad clinical expertise and management experience and has held midwifery roles in both Queensland and Western Australian public and private healthcare sectors, including Midwifery Unit Manager and Director of Nursing and Midwifery. She has advanced contemporary nursing and midwifery skills providing both clinical and non-clinical care in many different settings from low risk MGP to all risk services. Alison has participated in numerous new hospital builds, consulting directly with the Department of Health. She has led quality improvement and evidence-based practice activities to ensure the provision of quality, cost-effective services and has been responsible for service direction, coordination and strategic planning. She is chair of the Midwifery Leadership Advisory Group in Qld, sits on the Qld Maternity and Neonatal Clinical Network as an active contributor, participates in working groups for policy and procedure review and is actively sought after for strategic workshops, having recently participated in a Midwifery recruitment and retention prioritisation and co-chaired the Continuity of Maternity Care working group as part of the Qld Normal Birth Collaborative.
We’re excited to welcome Alison to the team and know that her experiences, both in clinical midwifery and management of services, coupled with her drive for woman-centred continuity of midwifery care will make her an effective leader and strong Chief Midwife at ACM. Alison will commence on 30 January 2023.