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Thread: Articles: Australia wide Obstetrician shortage

  1. #1

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    Default Articles: Australia wide Obstetrician shortage

    Here's two articles about the current state of maternity care.

    OBSTETRICS CRISIS Women's health action plan

    Author: LISA ALLISON, POLITICAL REPORTER
    Publication: The Advertiser (007,Sat 19 Aug 2006)

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    THE State Government is turning to midwives to ease the state's obstetrics crisis.

    The Government yesterday released a blueprint for women's health in the state.

    The South Australian Women's Health Action Plan 2006/07 outlines 12 initiatives to improve women's health. The plan, a first for the state, establishes a statewide maternity framework under which more community-based midwifery maternity services will be established throughout the state.

    The plan states more ``midwifery-led continuity models of care are available in more health units in SA''. It means each woman would be assigned a primary midwife who would care for her throughout her pregnancy.

    It was yesterday welcomed by the Midwifery Coalition, a national group which has has lobbied for more midwifery led care for women.

    ``This will mean more women will have more choice about where they birth their babies and with whom,'' Coalition spokeswoman Jo Bainbridge said.

    ``This is something women really want and it will mean birthing becomes a natural part of life, not primarily a medical event.''

    The announcement also comes as Australia is gripped by a national shortage of obstetricians.



    Child Youth and Women's Health Service chief executive Heather Gray said the focus on midwifery services was developed both to meet community need and to use the state's maternity workforce, including doctors and midwives, more efficiently.

    ``We have a midwifery group practice at the Women's and Children's Hospital and we have consistently had waiting lists of women waiting to use the service,'' Ms Gray said.

    ``We know women want more choice. We are looking at how we can expand similar types of care throughout the state,'' she said.

    Health Minister John Hill said the move was about `` ensuring that the provision of health services to South Australian women is well-tailored and responsive to their needs''.

    KEY INITIATIVES

    Other initiatives of the South Australian Women's Health Action Plan for 2006-07:

    INCREASE the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women in the state's health workforce.

    IMPROVE access to appropriate ante-natal care.

    DEVELOP best practice standards for pregnancy counselling services.

    TRAIN staff in communication skills.


    Headline: OBSTETRICS CRISIS Women's health action plan
    Author: LISA ALLISON, POLITICAL REPORTER
    Edition: 1 - State
    Section: News

    Saturday 19 August 2006

    The Canberra Times

    260 women miss out on midwife program

    Author: Danielle Cronin Health Reporter
    Publication: The Canberra Times (6,Sat 19 Aug 2006)
    Edition: CT

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    About 260 pregnant women on the waiting list for midwives missed out last year, according to a new report that reveals the current program is unable to cope with growing demand for services. And the number of women who wanted to use the Canberra Midwifery Program but could not be accommodated has ''increased dramatically'' during the past four years. Health Minister Katy Gallagher issued yesterday the needs analysis commissioned in response to a Legislative Assembly committee report on maternity services tabled three years ago.

    ''The independent report noted that depending on the modelling used, the demand for [Canberra Midwifery Program] services would be between two to four times the current capacity of the program over the next five to 10 years,'' Ms Gallagher said. ''Around 500 women use the program every year, and often there are lengthy waiting lists to get access to the program. ''The Government needs to look at how we can increase capacity within the [program] whilst ensuring that we continue to provide a diversity of services for all the range of needs that exist.'

    ' Opposition health spokesman Brendan Smyth said the statistics showed the Government had failed again to listen to advice on ways to take pressure of the public hospital system. The minister should urgently sit down with midwives to work out ways to meet the demand for midwife-led care. And the Government should immediately help on the medical indemnity front, so independent midwives could secure insurance and work again with pregnant women.

    Greens MLA Dr Deb Foskey said the Government was finally moving in the right direction, albeit slowly. ''People should remember midwife- led birth is in general safer and less expensive than more intensive medicalised births, and most women want to have access to the range of birthing options,'' Dr Foskey said ''In terms of home births, things have proved a bit difficult to organise in the ACT, particularly due to the prejudice of reinsurance businesses. ''However, NSW is now offering publicly funded home births, as do other states and the Northern Territory.

    Minister Gallagher could explore a regional solution with Southern Area Health, perhaps, or a national approach by talking to the other health ministers.'' Australian College of Midwives ACT branch president Gill Hall said the report showed that some women were missing out on the ''gold standard'' of pregnancy care. The Government could expand the midwifery program at Canberra Hospital, or offer midwife-led care at Calvary Hospital to meet demand.

    Almost 500 women gave birth using the Canberra Midwifery Program in the past year. But 263 on the waiting list could not access the service - up from 64 in 2002. Ms Gallagher said she had set up a working group to offer advice on the best way forward.

    ''This is not simply a case of requiring additional money. ''Across the territory, births are not expected to increase so we need to look at how best to allocate the current funding that we have in order to provide the full diversity of services that women and their partners are seeking.''

    Headline: 260 women miss out on midwife program
    Author: Danielle Cronin Health Reporter
    Kelly xx

    Creator of BellyBelly.com.au, doula, writer and mother of three amazing children
    Author of Want To Be A Doula? Everything You Need To Know
    Follow me in 2015 as I go Around The World + Kids!
    Forever grateful to my incredible Mod Team and many wonderful members who have been so supportive since 2003.

  2. #2
    Percy Guest

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    Go the midwives! I really do believe the maternity system is in Australia is over-medicalised. I think that an obs is someone you see if you have a problem with your pregnancy NOT someone you see if you have a "normal" problem free pregnancy.

  3. #3

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    I wholeheartedly agree Percy. Many NZ'ers share this view, especially your midwives
    Kelly xx

    Creator of BellyBelly.com.au, doula, writer and mother of three amazing children
    Author of Want To Be A Doula? Everything You Need To Know
    Follow me in 2015 as I go Around The World + Kids!
    Forever grateful to my incredible Mod Team and many wonderful members who have been so supportive since 2003.

  4. #4

    Join Date
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    Moving to news forum
    Kelly xx

    Creator of BellyBelly.com.au, doula, writer and mother of three amazing children
    Author of Want To Be A Doula? Everything You Need To Know
    Follow me in 2015 as I go Around The World + Kids!
    Forever grateful to my incredible Mod Team and many wonderful members who have been so supportive since 2003.

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