According to The Age, a report written by Commonwealth chief nurse and midwifery officer Rosemary Bryant, due to be released today, suggests that new funding arrangements could support the expansion of midwives' roles in Australia's failing maternity system. Under the new scheme, midwives would have access to indemnity insurance, Medicare numbers and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme. Of course, many obstetricians are upset by this prospect. More than 900 submissions from health professionals, individuals, researchers, industry groups and professional organisations have been received. In submissions, the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists said midwives should not be given Medicare numbers and the Australian Medical Association said independent midwifery care would jeopardise the care of mothers and babies.
The report states that midwives must meet an advanced level of professional education and experience before being given greater access.
What do we think?