A SENATE committee will today deliver its findings following an inquiry into the Federal Government's proposed healthcare laws, which could see up to 200 midwives deregistered. Under the changes, midwives must be insured in order to be registered, but private insurers no longer provide cover for homebirthing.
Opponents believe it will drive the practice underground and increase health risks.
Midwives have argued that outlawing homebirths removes a mother's right to choose and will be a step back to the dark ages.
About 2000 women have submitted their names to the senate inquiry, showing the depth of opposition to the issue, Australian Private Midwives Association president Liz Wilkes said.
It's great that this is getting out in the media, but it's so important that facts are reported, not hysteria. No midwife will be deregistered as a result of the proposed legislation. Private midwives will be able to register, but as non-practicing midwives. What is affected is our ability to practice, not our ability to register. Practicing without insurance may result in disciplinary action that may include deregistration.