Giving birth to regulations, licensing for midwifery will take time, Sullivan says

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Health Minister Susan Sullivan said today it will take between five and seven years before midwives will be able to practice within the public health system in the province.

Susan Sullivan is pictured at a news conference today. — Photo by Joe Gibbons/The Telegram

That’s after she released the report “Implementing Midwifery in Newfoundland and Labrador” which is meant to help guide the establishment of midwifery in Newfoundland and Labrador.

“Establishing midwifery is a long-term investment because it takes policy changes, time and effort to integrate practitioners and a period of time to have sufficient midwives to have an impact on the provision of maternity care,” Sullivan said.

“We will continue to work with the provincial midwifery body as they form their professional college and provide submissions for the development of regulations.”

Mary Hodge of the Association of Midwives of Newfoundland and Labrador said she’s disappointed it will take so long, but welcomes the fact there is some movement toward licensing the profession.

“There are midwives in Alberta and other places waiting to come home to practice,” she said.

Liberal health critic Christopher Mitchelmore said he’s disappointed at the slow turnaround in the public system especially since there are midwives already practising in the Labrador Grenfell Health region.

“There are midwives that have been practising and delivering babies and dealing with the pre-and post-natal care as well as delivering and there has been a lot of success on the Great Northern Peninsula and to see it is going to take so much time to implement in the health authority, this is just taking away choice,” said Mitchelmore, who represents Straits- White Bay North.

“For those who can afford care, those are the only ones that will be able to avail of such a service so it’s a backwards step.”

The report states the first step in the process will be to develop regulations concerning the private practice of the profession under the Health Professions Act.

A news release notes the provincial government will also be appointing an implementation co-ordinator and an advisory committee to help inform the process of regulating midwives in the province. The report is available at: http://www.health.gov.nl.ca/health/publications/Midwifery_Report_2014.pdf

 “The report examined the potential of regulating midwifery as a means of providing quality health care for childbearing women and their families in our province,” Sullivan said.

“We are pleased with what we have learned, and we will be working with the Newfoundland and Labrador Council of Health Professionals and the Association of Midwives of Newfoundland and Labrador to establish a transitional College of Midwives.

“Properly regulating this practice will protect mothers and their infants, and ensure that midwives have the appropriate training and qualifications and provide important recognition of this professional group.”

 

 

Organizations: College of Midwives, Association of Midwives of Newfoundland and Labrador, Newfoundland and Labrador Council of Health Professionals

Geographic location: Newfoundland and Labrador, Alberta

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Recent comments

  • Glenda Pittman
    March 07, 2014 - 06:10

    In Newfoundland we consider this a slap in the face as Midwives has been practicing full scope Midwifery for years. Now the government has to fess up and pay out to regulate for fear of legal action the Midwives have to stop practice. The government has to do better than rolling out regulation in 5-7 years.

  • Celie Parsons
    March 03, 2014 - 12:45

    This is disgusting, 5 years. Well, fortunately it won't take that long to replace you, since you have absolutely no regard for what the people want.

  • Glenda Pittman
    March 03, 2014 - 11:41

    An Inplementation coordinaor and an Advisory committee for 5-7 years ruffling through papers. What a waste of more taxpayers money when this can be accomplished in 6 months! We have lots of models to follow and Midwifery has been active in NL for a very long time. Midwives are specialist in the area of Maternal care....full scope Midwifery! GP's on the other hand are not specialist and that is why some GP's are going back to Ryerson Midwifery program to specialist in Midwifery! My daughter is a Midwife with a Bachelor of Health Science and a Major in Midwifery from Ryerson University. She would like to practice in Newfoundland but can't because of lack of regulations. This has been talked about and thrown around with enough reports and paperwork since 2010. Now Minister Sullivan says we need more reports that actually takes 7 years to complete! Why can't we ever get a Minister Of Health who's a little more proactive ! When I go to a GP I tell them what is wrong with me and also what medication to perscribe. If there was some ailment that couldn't be identified the GP would simply do tests and thereupon refer me to a Specialist. Now we are saying the Midwife who specializing in full scope Maternal care is not good enough and a GP is better! Now thats a step backward. We are constantly trying to recruit Doctors in all areas of NL. Do someone think they would be more interested if they have to do someone elses job besides their own. Perhaps the government would offer them a bonus for another service...more taxpayers money. Can't you manage our money better than that! Do something right!

  • Glenda Pittman
    March 03, 2014 - 11:39

    An Inplementation coordinaor and an Advisory committee for 5-7 years ruffling through papers. What a waste of more taxpayers money when this can be accomplished in 6 months! We have lots of models to follow and Midwifery has been active in NL for a very long time. Midwives are specialist in the area of Maternal care....full scope Midwifery! GP's on the other hand are not specialist and that is why some GP's are going back to Ryerson Midwifery program to specialist in Midwifery! My daughter is a Midwife with a Bachelor of Health Science and a Major in Midwifery from Ryerson University. She would like to practice in Newfoundland but can't because of lack of regulations. This has been talked about and thrown around with enough reports and paperwork since 2010. Now Minister Sullivan says we need more reports that actually takes 7 years to complete! Why can't we ever get a Minister Of Health who's a little more proactive ! When I go to a GP I tell them what is wrong with me and also what medication to perscribe. If there was some ailment that couldn't be identified the GP would simply do tests and thereupon refer me to a Specialist. Now we are saying the Midwife who specializing in full scope Maternal care is not good enough and a GP is better! Now thats a step backward. We are constantly trying to recruit Doctors in all areas of NL. Do someone think they would be more interested if they have to do someone elses job besides their own. Perhaps the government would offer them a bonus for another service...more taxpayers money. Can't you manage our money better than that! Do something right!

  • Glenda Pittman
    March 03, 2014 - 11:37

    An Inplementation coordinaor and an Advisory for 5-7 years ruffling through papers. What a waste of more taxpayers money when this can be accomplished in 6 months! We have lots of models to follow and Midwifery has been active in NL for a very long time. Midwives are specialist in the area of Maternal care....full scope Midwifery! GP's on the other hand are not specialist and that is why some GP's are going back to Ryerson Midwifery program to specialist in Midwifery! My daughter is a Midwife with a Bachelor of Health Science and a Major in Midwifery from Ryerson University. She would like to practice in Newfoundland but can't because of lack of regulations. This has been talked about and thrown around with enough reports and paperwork since 2010. Now Minister Sullivan says we need more reports that actually takes 7 years to complete! Why can't we ever get a Minister Of Health who's a little more proactive ! When I go to a GP I tell them what is wrong with me and also what medication to perscribe. If there was some ailment that couldn't be identified the GP would simply do tests and thereupon refer me to a Specialist. Now we are saying the Midwife who specializing in full scope Maternal care is not good enough and a GP is better! Now thats a step backward. We are constantly trying to recruit Doctors in all areas of NL. Do someone think they would be more interested if they have to do someone elses job besides their own. Perhaps the government would offer them a bonus for another service...more taxpayers money. Can't you manage our money better than that! Do something right!

  • OBSTETRICIAN
    February 27, 2014 - 19:47

    What a load of rubbish. We have been trying to recognise midwives here for almost 40 years to my knowledge. Our current Obstetric Nurses could easily and quickly be raised to Midwife Status. But nobody seems to understand that there is a major distinction between Hospital Midwives and District Midwives. Get the Hospitals on the go first, which can only improve our dysfunctional Obstetric Care, then consider other options later.

  • W Bagg
    February 27, 2014 - 14:58

    Waiting for Career Academy to start a midwife program, with start dates every month.