Province Introduces Midwifery Legislation

Department of Health (To Jan. 11)

November 15, 2006 2:18 PM

Nova Scotia women and their families may get more access to maternity care because of legislation announced today, Nov. 15.

Health Minister Chris d’Entremont introduced legislation
that will allow midwives to become part of primary maternity care teams in Nova Scotia.

"Adding midwives to our teams of health-care professionals allows us to better meet the needs of moms and families across Nova Scotia," said Mr. d'Entremont.

Midwives are trained specialists who care for women throughout pregnancy and low-risk births, and for mothers and babies in the first weeks after birth. Midwives will help support the health care system by working with family physicians and other primary health care providers to deliver care to women and families.

The 2003 Report of the Nova Scotia Advisory Committee on Primary Health Care Renewal recommended a team approach to primary maternity care, involving family physicians and midwives.

The Primary Maternity Care Working Group, made up of representatives from the Association of Nova Scotia Midwives; Midwifery Coalition of Nova Scotia; Registered Nurses Association of Nova Scotia; Doctors Nova Scotia; College of Physicians and Surgeons of Nova Scotia; IWK Health Centre; and other key stakeholders, recommended regulating midwives to help include them in primary health-care teams.

"We are very pleased to see this bill introduced," said Kerstin Martin from the Association of Nova Scotia Midwives. "Regulating midwives will protect Nova Scotians and ensure high quality midwifery care."

Midwives in Nova Scotia currently are not government regulated or integrated into the health-care system.


FOR BROADCAST USE:

     Nova Scotia women and their families may get more access to

maternity care because of legislation announced today (November

15).

      Health Minister Chris d'Entremont introduced

legislation that will allow midwives to become part of primary

maternity care teams in Nova Scotia.

     Midwives are trained specialists who care for women

throughout pregnancy and birth, and for mothers and babies in the

first weeks after birth.

     Mr. d'Entremont says having midwives as part of community

care teams can better meet the needs of moms and families across

the province.

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Media Contact: Tina Thibeau
              Department of Health
              902-424-2727
              E-mail: thibeatd@gov.ns.ca