Midwives celebrate eight years of service

Far West Local Health District (FWLHD) are celebrating eight years of dedicated service provided by the Midwifery Group Practice (MGP) which was established July 3 in 2015 with the aim of providing continuity of care for pregnant women and improving health and wellbeing outcomes and experiences for women and families.

The MGP team, consisting of six midwives, backed by a core group of midwives including Maari Ma Aboriginal Health Corporation midwives, recently celebrated the eight-year anniversary with an afternoon tea, featuring a cake in the shape of eight, attended by many of the midwives and doctors.

Since opening, the MGP has provided care to more than 1500 women, families and their babies by midwives known to the family from early pregnancy through to labour, birth and the initial postnatal period.

FWLHD Maternity Unit Manager, Megan Ritchie, said the Broken Hill Health Service has been a trailblazer in the MGP field, which she says is now considered the gold-standard model of midwifery care for women.

“Widespread evidence shows women experience better outcomes when midwives are the primary maternity care givers and work collaboratively with other providers to co-ordinate maternity care,” said Ms Ritchie.

“They experience fewer interventions during birth, reduced caesarean births, less epidural analgesia, and greater satisfaction with care provision,” she added.

“Speaking to our team of MGP midwives about the eight-year milestone this month, many expressed to me how honoured they felt to be able to share the trust of their clients at such a special – but also such a vulnerable – time in a woman’s life,” Ms Ritchie said.

“The difference they make and the personalised support they provide women by having somebody who knows them, having a familiar face, and somebody who understands the medical history, the family situation, results in more positive outcomes for the whole family.

“The MGP midwives reflected with joy about the trust and connection that they form with both the woman and her family. The women enjoy the support, time, and respect given in that environment to be able to birth their baby. One midwife who moved from Queensland to join the MGP team said she had heard how satisfying and all-encompassing the job is,” Ms Ritchie said.

“The future is bright for the Broken Hill MGP and for the many women and families in the community they support,” she said.

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