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A midwife usually begins providing care in the first trimester of a woman’s pregnancy, and as the primary caregiver provides complete maternity care to her client, including counseling, care planning, ordering laboratory tests and ultrasounds, and arranging any follow up or referrals that may be required.

The midwife attends the client prenatally, during labour and birth, and for postpartum home and clinic visits. The schedule of prenatal visits is the same as with other maternity care providers: once during the 1st trimester, monthly during the 2nd trimester, every 2 weeks from 28-36 weeks, and then weekly until birth. Visits are 30-60 minutes in length. Postpartum home visits usually occur on days 1, 3, 5 and sometime between days 7 and 10. This schedule may vary according to the individual client’s needs. The mother and baby are then seen in the clinic twice between 2 and 6 weeks postpartum.  

Of note, because of COVID 19 we are restricting unessential encounters. You can expect a reduced in-person visitation schedule, shorter visits and some telephone contact from your midwife.

Throughout the client’s care, a midwife is available on a 24-hour basis.

Midwives consult with physicians if necessary and may transfer care if required. A midwife may provide supportive care to her client if care is transferred.

Midwives always carry the required equipment to attend women during the delivery of their babies in a home setting. Midwives maintain current knowledge of:

  • Emergency Skills, including neonatal and adult cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • Laboratory and diagnostic testing
  • Breastfeeding counseling
  • Homebirth
  • Hospital birth

In Ontario, the practice of midwifery is based on the principles of:

  • Continuity of care with a small group of midwives
  • Informed choice for decision-making
  • Choice of birthplace   

Midwives provide their clients with information in order to help them make appropriate choices for their care. All clients are provided with a document about informed choice at the beginning of care, and they are provided information and resources throughout their care so they can make appropriate choices as needed.

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