I had the pleasure of being invited to the BigW Bub & Me sessions.
The one I attended was at Penrith BigW and there I spent some time chatting with Loretta Musgrave. Loretta has over 20 years’ experience as a midwife and is a lecturer of midwifery at UTS.
It was an intimate event and at the time it was just me having a chat with Loretta. I thought that I would give her some background of my births and experience and then ask my questions.
When pregnant with Alexander I had a very healthy and uncomplicated pregnancy. Every visit to the midwife at Katoomba hospital I was greeted with the same issue if you go over your due date, we will need to induce you. Why I asked, I’m not having an issue, this is just a singleton and my previous pregnancy was twins and I ended up having them naturally although early.
I really didn’t see the need. The many midwives that I saw said it is due to age, possible issues and complications.
So with what happened to me above I asked Loretta the following:
Q. Why would midwives tell you that you will need to be induced when there is no need for it currently?
A. Loretta said that midwives give recommendations on a course of action from previous experience and also what has recently occurred with other patients. She said that you need to be vocal about what you want and have happen for the birth of your child/children.
Q. Why do I need to keep on telling different midwives the same thing!
A. Loretta agrees that this is an annoying and horrible thing for expectant mums to have to do.
One main issue that came up due to having different carers was that inconsistent care can lead to missing things with the care of the mother and baby.
If one midwife sees you on a regular basis she can know if there is anything wrong with the following:
- Development of the baby
- Mother’s health
- Making sure that the mother is not in a violent or abusive relationship
- Note any changes from last time and recommend solutions
- Help the mother if she has any concerns
- And anything else that is needed
Lorretta believes that the continuation of midwifery care is essential and something we need to strive for. Having a midwife that sees you all the time can save money, and bring better health outcomes.
“For example, an evaluation of a midwifery group practice in Adelaide included women who were high, medium and low risk and compared the outcomes for women who received continuity of midwifery care with those who did not. Women who received continuity of midwifery care had fewer assisted births, fewer labour inductions, less epidural analgesia, no significant differences in post-partum haemorrhage rates, being admitted to hospital in pregnancy or the baby being admitted to Special or Intensive Care Nurseries(10). Women who received care from a known midwife valued the continuity of care, accessibility, the personal and professional attributes of the midwife and were highly satisfied with the care they received.” (Australian College of Midwives)
According to Lorretta midwives have been asking and trying to implement this idea of the continuation of midwifery care across Australia.
From my perspective it is a simple thing to do that will benefit the healthcare system, families, women, and babies. It makes sense and one that you would have thought would have been implemented already.
Q. Are there any other tools that will help new or expectant mums?
A. Lorretta is not a fan of apps and believes that they don’t give accurate or good information. So don’t pay or download any apps.
Here are some websites that Lorretta recommends:
Did you know that 2020 is the year of the nurse and midwife?
Nurses and Midwives do so much and are the first people you see.
Get some ideas for how to get involved with Year of the Nurse and Midwife
Thanks, Loretta for the interview and thanks to BigW for the opportunity.
Did you have the same midwife during your pregnancy and birth of your child/children?
Read the first of my BigW Bub & Me Series – INTERVIEW WITH PINKY MCKAY – BIGW BUB & ME SERIES
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