Challenging midwifery care, challenging midwives and challenging the system

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Women and Birth, 2006, 19 (3), pp. 79 - 83
Issue Date:
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The purpose of this paper is to generate debate and discussion about the state of midwifery services in Australia today. While numerous reports have been published that highlight what women want in maternity care, widespread change has not occurred. This paper presents the story of Alice (a real woman with a fictitious name). Alice's story highlights the challenges that women face in dealing with a system that is often inflexible. While the health systems, and those who work within them, usually have the best intentions to try to provide the type of care that women want, they are not always successful. The paper summarises the evidence and support for models of continuity of midwifery care and outlines a series of strategies to ensure that change can occur. Finally, the paper challenges all midwives to work towards widespread, system-level change in Australian maternity services. © 2006 Australian College of Midwives.
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