Medicare-funded midwifery care: What you need to know

I am a medicare-eligible midwife. This means that my private clients may claim some of the cost of private midwifery care, much the same way we do when we see a GP. As well as Medicare benefits, some private health funds will provide benefits for childbirth education with a midwife, and costs may also be claimed through tax as a medical expense (more on that one from your Accountant). Medicare benefits and tax benefits combined are between $2,500 and $3,300. This means that care with me will be up to $3,300 cheaper than care with a non-eligible private midwife. The bottom line: I am confident that women will be able to claim a greater portion of private midwifery fees through various means so that private midwifery care will be absolutely affordable to most families. This is all without compromising the high standard of care and service that women experience.

What is a Medicare-Eligible Midwife?

In order to claim Medicare benefits from care with your midwife, you will need to ensure that your midwife is Medicare Eligible. A Medicare-Eligible Midwife meets certain advanced requirements:

* Current general registration as a midwife in Australia with no restrictions on practice; * Midwifery experience that constitutes the equivalent of 3 years full time post initial registration as a midwife; * Current competence to provide pregnancy, labour, birth and postnatal care to women and babies; * Successful completion of an approved professional practice review program for midwives working across the continuum of midwifery care; * 40 hours per year of continuing professional development relating to the continuum of midwifery care (20 hours in addition to standard requirements); * Formal undertaking to complete an accredited and approved program of study to develop midwives' knowledge and skills in prescribing within 18 months.

Pregnancy care:

* 45-60 minute consultations in your home or in my clinic * Childbirth education * Continuity of carer * Medicare benefits * Obstetric back-up

Birth in hospital

* Continue your care with the same midwife you know and trust, with specialist obstetric back-up readily available

Postnatal care

* Consultations in the your home and / or my clinic * Medicare benefits

Visit my website to explore birthing services.