National Definition of a Midwife
Midwife is an individual educated in the discipline of midwifery or Registered Nurse/ANM who possesses evidence of present work experience in maternity care according to the requirements of the MIDSON.
International Definition of a Midwife
Adopted by the International Confederation of Midwives 19 July 2005
A midwife is a person who, having been regularly admitted to a midwifery educational programme, duly recognized in the country in which it is located, has successfully completed the prescribed course of studies in midwifery and has acquired the requisite qualifications to be registered and/or legally licensed to practice midwifery.
The midwife is recognized as a responsible and accountable professional who works in partnership with women to give the necessary support, care and advice during pregnancy, labour and the postpartum period, to conduct births on the midwife’s own responsibility and to provide care for the newborn and the infant. This care includes preventive measures, the promotion of normal birth, the detection of complications in mother and child, the accessing of medical or other appropriate assistance and the carrying out of emergency measures.
The midwife has an important task in health counseling and education, not only for the woman, but also within the family and community. This work should involve antenatal education and preparation for parenthood and may extend to women’s health, sexual or reproductive health and childcare.
A midwife may practice in any setting including in the home, the community, hospitals, clinics or health units.
Direct-Entry Midwife (DEM)
A direct-entry midwife is an independent practitioner educated in the discipline of midwifery through self-study, apprenticeship, a midwifery school, or a college- or university-based program distinct from the discipline of nursing. A direct-entry midwife is trained to provide the Midwives Model of Care to healthy women and newborns throughout the childbearing cycle primarily in out-of-hospital settings.
International Confederation of Midwives (ICM)
The purpose of the International Confederation of Midwives is to advance worldwide the aims and aspirations of midwives in the attainment of improved outcomes for women
in their childbearing years, their newborns, and their families wherever they reside.
Midwives Model of Care™ The Midwives Model of Care™ is based on the fact that pregnancy and birth are normal life events. The Midwives Model of Care includes:
- monitoring the physical, psychological and social well-being of the mother throughout the childbearing cycle
- providing the mother with individualized education, counseling, and prenatal care, continuous hands-on assistance during labor and delivery, and postpartum support
- minimizing technological interventions and
- identifying and referring women who require obstetrical attention
The application of this model has been proven to reduce to incidence of birth injury, trauma, and cesarean section.
The Midwives Model of Care definition above is Copyright © 1996-2001, Midwifery Task Force, All Rights Reserved.
A person who instructs, supervises and/or assesses the clinical skills and knowledge of a student throughout the process of meeting the specific knowledge, skills and experience goals required to fulfil professional standards. Preceptor-based education offers the student one-on-one instruction, close supervision of clinical experience and on-the-spot evaluation. States, Provinces or organizations may have specific requirements to qualify as a preceptor.