Obstetricians are doctors who complete extensive specialist training in pregnancy and birth and all areas of gynaecology. Obstetricians are qualified to provide pregnancy and birth care to healthy women, as well as women with risk-associated pregnancies and births. They are able to perform assisted births such as vacuum births, as well as caesareans. All women are cared for by a midwife in labour and midwives provide the bulk of labour care. If the woman's labour is straight forward, an obstetrician would not routinely be involved in her care. However, if the need arose, the midwife would always enlist the support of an obstetrician to provide guidance about the best path to take.
Midwives are primary care providers for low-risk, healthy women throughout pregnancy, birth and the postnatal period and most women can expect to have a healthy pregnancy. However, if the pregnancy or birth take a different path, obstetricians and midwives work together to provide safe care to the woman and her baby.
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