Midwives are health professionals which providers offer care to childbearing women during their pregnancy, labour and birth, and during the postpartum period. The role of a midwife is varied, and each day is usually different depending if whether you are conducting prenatal, antenatal or postnatal appointments, or attending a birth.
Midwives operate in many settings, including hospital maternity units, birth centres, obstetrician's consulting rooms, midwifery group practices, community health centres and in private homes. Where you see a midwife will depend on where and how you choose to give birth.
Midwives will provide most of your antenatal care if you're planning to give birth in a public maternity unit. You might also see a midwife during your appointments with a private obstetrician. For a planned home birth, you'll probably see the same midwife (or a small team) throughout your pregnancy.
Your Midwife will usually:
- Check your baby's health, growth and position
- Advise on or help with hospital bookings
- Conduct routine tests and checks
- Give you support and advice
- Help you prepare for labour and birth
Prior to becoming a Midwife you will need to have all the practical experience and qualifications of a Registered Nurse (RN) with at least three years practical full time experience. Registered Nurses work as part of a multidisciplinary team alongside other skilled professionals including doctors, surgeons, specialists, therapists, specialty nurses, social workers and many others to provide ongoing patient care to people who are sick, disabled, injured or recovering from surgery. Registered nurses deliver primary health care predominantly in hospitals, clinics, assisted living facilities, aged care facilities, Government or military institutions, community or school settings, in the home or in outpatient facilities.
Read about all other Specialty Nursing Roles here
To become a Registered Nurse in Australia you need to complete a 3-year Bachelor of Nursing, which is available at most Australian universities. Alternatively, for students with previous tertiary qualifications, complete a two-year Master of Nursing (Graduate Entry) program. Further study is essential if you are looking to take the next step in your career and advance in specialist nursing roles.
Nurses who specialise in a particular area of medicine may need to complete further studies or specialist training and obtain relevant experience.
To become a Midwife you will need to complete a Bachelor of Midwifery and a Masters of Midwifery Practice or a nursing degree and postgraduate midwifery qualification.
All Nurses must apply to the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA). Registration must be renewed annually.
- AHPRA Registration
- Post Natal Care
- AHPRA Midwifery Endorsement
- Patient Care
- Physical, psychological and process of pregnancy and birth
- Developing and implementing care policies
Registered Nurses can undertake further studies to obtain qualifications and progress their career into more senior positions such as;
Registered Nurses can specialise in other roles, undertaking further studies to obtain qualifications and specialise in a particular area of nursing. Specialised Nursing Roles include:
- Aged Care Nurse
- Alcohol & Other Drug Nurse
- Anaesthetic Nurse
- Cardiac Nurse
- Child and Family Health Nurse
- Community Health Nurse
- Critical Care & Emergency Nurse
- Flight Nurse
- Infection Control Nurse
- Intensive Care Specialist Nurse
- Mental Health Nurse
- Oncology Nurse
- Paediatric Nurse
- Palliative Care Nurse
- Perioperative Nurse
- Post Operative Nurse
- Rehabilitation Nurse
- Surgical Nurse
- Theatre Nurse