Birthwrite

NHS, midwives, women and politics

The news and social media have been ablaze with debate and comments since the new (non-coalition) Government has been elected, many suggesting it will lead to further privatisation of the NHS as well...

Respect leads to respect

Since the publication of the Kirkup (2015) report, midwives have expressed concern to me that the recommendations will impact negatively on their ability to practice autonomously. This concern has, in...

Normal birth in the shadow of Morecambe Bay

Over the last year or so we seem to have reached a turning point in establishing evidence-based care that reflects the importance of supporting normal birth and a reduction of interventions, through...

Freedom to speak up—easier said than done

In February, Robert Francis outlined his review into whistleblowing in the NHS and the freedom of nurses and midwives to speak up (Francis, 2015). There is a duty to do so within the Code (Nursing and...

Midwifery leaders and managers ‘batten down the hatches’

The economic climate in England over the next decade presents greater challenges than ever before for health and social care services. It is estimated that if the current model of health care...

Midwifery going from strength to strength

I have been President of the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) for almost 3 years During that time I have travelled to all parts of the UK and all over the world clocking up thousands of miles I have...

The changing climate of legal and ethical issues in maternity services

A number of recent cases have highlighted the need for midwives to have an increased knowledge and understanding of legal and ethical issues and how to apply these in practice. One of these, the case...

Professional indemnity insurance—the making or breaking of midwifery

The issue of professional indemnity insurance (PII) as a condition for practice has been hotly debated over the years Although some professions required its registrants to have indemnity insurance,...

What can midwives learn from New Zealand?

I have had a long-term connection with New Zealand since the early 1990s when both England and New Zealand started to implement policies for woman-centred care and continuity of care. Our shared...

Newly qualified midwives: Be confident and competent

As a lecturer I see lots of students start and complete courses of study, and it is nearing that time of year when another cohort of students are preparing to complete their midwifery programme and...

Supply and demand of the consultant midwife

Over the past few decades advanced practitioner posts have emerged in the USA, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Ireland and the UK. In the UK, consultant nurse and midwife posts were first introduced...

Midwives of the world at the ICM

Even while I was waiting for the bus to take me to the airport to fly home after the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) 40th Triennial Congress in Prague (June 2014), the conversations...

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