Care with a modern midwife is truly an art form – combining the guiding, healing hands of one’s most trusted advisor and nurturer with today’s knowledge, science and medicine. This fusion is what sets midwives apart from most doctors.
A midwife’s care is based on the idea that the woman is the central decision maker in matters regarding her birth and her child. Midwives respond to mothers as a caring and collaborative partner, highly trained to work with each unique situation individually. Her goal is the health and well being of mother and baby. She has the resources, wisdom and professional training to safely guide the journey of pregnancy.
A qualified midwife provides comprehensive prenatal care, guides labor and birth, and cares for newborns. However, her unique value is revealed as she connects with a woman and her family to offer a deeper level of care. During pre and postnatal visits that are three to ten times longer than standard doctor visits, the midwife listens to what is needed at each step of the process. She can then offer appropriate information, physical, emotional or clinical support, and options.
The safety and benefits of midwife care have been proven again and again in countries across the world. World Health Organization statistics show that births attended by midwives have lower infection rates, lower C-section rates, fewer complications, and healthier outcomes – thus, lower overall medical costs – than physician-attended hospital births. In addition, there is no difference in infant mortality between midwife-attended and physician-attended births for low-risk women. Countries such as the Netherlands, Sweden, and New Zealand, which have the best birth outcome statistics in the world, use midwives as their main maternity care providers.