Australian Midwifery News and we're looking for articles for the next edition which has "back to midwifery basics" as its theme. The deadline for submission to the editor is the 10th April, but I am sure that can be negotiated if you would be interested in submitting an article.
This has got me thinking about what I would say about how to get back to midwifery basics.
There are lots of things, especially clinical tips and tricks, that I could talk about, but I feel they all lead back to four key 'back to midwifery basics' principles:
- Work in partnership with women, preferably in a continuity model of care, to build a relationship so that both woman and midwife have trust and confidence in each other. This will lead to better clinical outcomes for women and improved job satisfaction and autonomy for midwives;
- Facilitate informed choice and decision-making by ensuring women have access to evidence-based information. Further, that women are supported to fully understand the implications of their decisions and able to plan their care. This is especially important to do in the antenatal period so that women are prepared for labour and birth, and once the baby comes. It needs time and care, and cannot be done in 5 minute antenatal appointments!
- Resist medical interventions that are unnecessary, unproven, have no impact on clinical outcomes and may even be harmful eg continuous fetal monitoring in labour.This takes time, strength and persistence; however, the maternity services are crying out for strong midwifery leadership in this area.
- Treat women and their families with respect, kindness, dignity, compassion and cultural sensitivity (not racism).
If you are a midwife, what do you feel we should be "getting back" to? If you are a pregnant woman, what "basics" do you believe midwives should be focusing on?
Image: Chlot's Run https://www.flickr.com/photos/chiotsrun/5908995656