1) What is a midwife?
Midwives are trained health care providers who care for families during pregnancy, labour and birth, and 6 weeks postpartum. Midwives help empower families by offering informed choice decision making throughout their care, as well as recognizing that pregnancy and birth are a life changing event for any family.
We are able to provide the same care as you would receive with other health care providers including ordering lab tests and blood work, providing ultrasounds if indicated, and offering screening for you and your baby.
2) Is there a cost for midwifery care?
No, there is no cost to midwifery care. If you are a resident of Ontario and have a valid OHIP card, your entire care will be covered by the ministry of health. If you do not have an OHIP card, your midwifery care is free, however you may receive a bill for any lab work, ultrasounds, or hospital care you might choose to receive. There is an available fund for people who are waiting for Ontario Health coverage that can cover up to $2000 of some lab, ultrasound and hospital fees which we are happy to help you coordinate if needed.
3) Where do midwives work?
Our midwives are a multi-functional bunch! Due to our widespread geographic location, we currently provide care out of three clinic sites (Milverton, Palmerston, and Mount Forest), three hospitals (Listowel, Groves Memorial, and Stratford.) and coming soon, our birth suite in our new office in Harriston!
Prenatally, when you see your midwife you will see them out of their "home clinic" in either Milverton or Palmerston, or for home visits when indicated. During labour and birth you can receive care at the location of your choice, and postpartum your visits will take place in the comfort of your home for the first few visits, and we will wrap up your care back in your clinic.
4) How are midwives trained?
Midwives in Ontario are trained in one of three routes:
The Midwifery Education Programme (MEP) which is a four year bachelor of science in midwifery
Internationally trained midwives may register through the International Midwifery Pre-Registration Program (IMPP) which provides a bridge between their original country of practice, and Canadian midwifery.
Transferring from another Canadian province with legislated midwifery.
Midwives who are registered via any of these pathways have received education on pregnancy, birth, and postpartum and must have attended many families prior to registration as a midwife. We are required to renew our skills yearly in neonatal resuscitation, emergency skills, CPR, and via participation in community learning events at our hospitals, clinics, and through peer review.
5) Do I see a midwife and a doctor?
In Ontario midwives, family practice physicians, and obstetricians are all primary health care providers. This means that you will see one of the above during your pregnancy, birth, and postpartum.
Unless a complication arises, a midwife may provide complete perinatal care to a family. If a pregnancy becomes complicated, a midwife may provide shared care, or supportive care with a physician.
Frequently Asked Questions
Midwifery has been around for a long time, but we all still get a lot of questions about what we do! If you are considering midwifery, you may have some of the same questions, or your family or friends may have them too! Have more questions? Reach out and let us know!