What to Expect from a Midwife

WGM pic 9During pregnancy, a qualified midwife will:

  1. Ask the client about her health history, family health history and any previous pregnancies, and discuss whether any special care is needed during this pregnancy.
  2. Review the client’s prenatal records, which commonly include routine prenatal lab work (blood type & Rh factor, hemoglobin/hematocrit, rubella status and infectious disease screening), pelvic exam, vaginal cultures, and urinalysis, and determine with the client whether any special care is needed based on these records.
  3. Discuss the client’s wishes for her care and provide individualized care according to the client’s needs and desires.
  4. Provide education on nutrition, fetal development, exercise and healthy lifestyle choices.
  5. Provide a regular schedule of prenatal visits, which includes monitoring blood pressure, urinalysis, and growth and position of baby, to ensure that the pregnancy is healthy and normal.
  6. Provide information about additional testing available during pregnancy, such as quadruple screen, ultrasound scan, glucose tolerance testing & group B streptococcus cultures, and assist the client in obtaining these tests if needed or desired.
  7. Refer the client for medical care if signs of complications develop.

During labor and birth, a qualified midwife will:

  1. Monitor the health of mother and baby during labor.
  2. Monitor and facilitate labor progress.
  3. Refer for medical care if signs of a complication develop and remain with the client for support.
  4. Provide stabilizing care including neonatal resuscitation if necessary in an emergency while awaiting medical care.

After the birth, a qualified midwife will:

  1. Monitor the mother’s recovery during the first six weeks after birth.
  2. Monitor the baby’s growth and development until well-baby care has been established or until six weeks after birth.
  3. Provide information and support about breastfeeding and infant care.
  4. Refer for medical care if signs of complications develop during the post-birth or newborn period.