The Role of a Midwife
Many women assume that midwives are more or less just nurses who help doctors deliver babies. In reality, this is far from true. Unlike nurses, midwives specialize in just one area of healthcare: they help mothers carry their pregnancies to term, give birth, and recover from the process. In Melbourne and elsewhere in Australia, women can pursue midwifery continuity of care, or caseload care, either in hospital settings or through private midwives.
Those who choose to work with a private midwife can now get the care they need subsidized by Medicare. Women can self-refer to private midwives who don’t work in hospital settings and receive Medicare rebates for their visits. Also known as endorsed private practice midwives, these highly trained professionals retain visiting rights in most hospitals in Melbourne, as well, which means they can provide antenatal and postnatal care in either home or hospital settings.
How does a Private Midwife work?
Hiring a private midwife works in largely the same way as working with those provided by the hospital system with a few exceptions. Women can seek care at any point in their pregnancies and will work with their midwives until at least six weeks after giving birth. The primary difference is that private midwives aren’t employed by hospitals, so they don’t have to follow hospital policies. Women who opt for endorsed private practice midwives will also be able to develop relationships with their caregivers throughout their pregnancies since they will see the same professional at each visit.
What is your midwife's role during pregnancy?
Your midwife’s role during pregnancy is to provide most forms of antenatal care. Those who are planning home births can expect to see the same midwife or small team of caregivers throughout their pregnancies. They will come to the home to perform routine visits, which will include checking the baby’s position, growth, and overall health, advising pregnant women about routine tests and checks, offering advice and support, and preparing women for labour and birth.
What is your midwife's role at birth?
Your midwife’s role at birth will be to assist with labour and the birth of the child. For a routine home birth, that might include offering encouragement and emotional support, supplying relevant information and strategies to help with labour, monitoring progress and the baby’s health, and arranging for medical help if it’s required. When this is the case, the midwife will call an ambulance to address complications that require medical intervention and will accompany the woman or the couple to the hospital.
What is your midwife's role after birth?
In Australia, a midwife’s job doesn’t end after the mother gives birth. Immediately following the birth, the midwife will provide basic care, like checking to make sure the mother hasn’t lost too much blood and doesn’t need any stitches. If everything goes smoothly, the midwife will usually continue to visit the mother at home or in the hospital on a daily basis for the first few days, then schedule additional visits for up to seven weeks after the birth.
During routine post-birth visits, midwives can help new mothers learn how to breastfeed, settle their babies, change nappies, and give baths. They can also perform basic health tests like newborn screenings and make arrangements for mothers to get access to pain relief through a doctor as needed.
Call us today 03 9860 4440 to book your free 15 min phone consultation.
Book your free 15 min phone consultation now
Welcoming a child into the world can be an incredibly positive experience, but it can also be stressful. Expecting mothers usually have lots of questions and they need all kinds of practical and emotional support. Hiring a private midwife gives them access to a dedicated, compassionate, and experienced professional who can perform routine exams, answer questions, provide family support, assist with the birth, make arrangements for additional care, and generally ensure that everything goes smoothly.
Hiring a private midwife can reduce the amount of stress that mothers must face during one of the most important times of their lives and create a more positive experience that can occur on their own terms from the comfort of their own homes. Browse the website to learn more or get in touch 03 9860 4440 to discuss options in greater detail today.