Introduction to Midwifery Care
Registered midwives are trained health professionals who provide primary care to women and their babies during pregnancy, labour, birth and the postpartum period. As primary care providers, midwives can address the medical and non-medical needs of women and their newborns, and are fully responsible for clinical decisions and the management of normal low-risk pregnancies.
Midwives offer personalized care from early pregnancy to six-weeks postpartum. They provide continuity of care so that women and their families have the opportunity to get to know their midwife or midwives well before the baby is born, and have a familiar care giver with them during labour and birth and for their postpartum care. Registered midwives are able to conduct physical examinations, screening and diagnostic tests, assess risk factors and abnormal conditions, and conduct normal vaginal deliveries. Midwives work in collaboration with other health professionals and consult with or refer to medical specialists as appropriate. Registered midwives offer a choice between out-of-hospital or hospital birth unless there is a risk factor that indicates that out-of-hospital is not a safe option for the woman or the baby.
During labour and birth, a midwife stays with a woman and manages all her care (a second midwife or other care provider will attend the birth as well). As primary caregivers for childbirth, midwives regularly update certification for the management of maternal and newborn emergency situations. If a complication arises at any point in the pregnancy, labour, birth, or postpartum, midwives consult with specialists such as obstetricians and pediatricians. In cases where management of care needs to be transferred to a physician, midwives will continue to provide supportive care.
Midwifery Care has Three Important Principles
Continuity of Care
You will be seen by the same small group of midwives in a midwifery practice. These midwives will be available to provide our primary care 24hrs a day, throughout your entire pregnancy and birthing process. Midwives can stay involved in your care even if you need to see a doctor during your pregnancy or labour. Midwives spend time developing a relationship with you and provide safe, personalized care during your pregnancy, labour, birth, and for 6 weeks afterwards.
Midwives see pregnancy and birth as healthy processes and profound, natural events in a woman’s life. Midwives provide you with information about all your options and support you in making decisions that are right for you.
Choice of Birthplace
Midwives are primary caregivers who provide care that respects your needs, values, and dignity. A midwife will offer you the choice of where to have your baby and will be able to provide the care you need whether you choose to give birth at home or in the hospital. In any setting, midwives consult with other health care providers when necessary.
For more general information about midwifery care click on the links below, watch the videos displayed, and refer to our FAQ section. Please feel free to call our clinic with any questions.