Reasons that women don’t engage private midwives

  1. She doesn’t know what a private midwife does. A private midwife is a midwife who works in a private practice.  Women who elect to be treated as private patients choose their care provider, so this means that a midwife who works in private practice works with women in the private health system providing complete continuity of care.  Private midwives usually consult with women in the midwife’s office or consulting rooms, or in the woman’s home.  Private midwives attend births in women’s homes, in birth centres and in hospitals.  They work with doctors to ensure that women and babies receive the very best care possible.
  2. It’s not recommended by their doctor. If your doctor is recommending against going with a private midwife, this could possibly be due to a lack of awareness of the ways in which private midwives work.  Your private midwife is able to contact your doctor to explain more about the way that private midwifery care is offered.  Many doctors remain unaware that there are Medicare benefits for care with eligible midwives in private practice, and that eligible midwives in private practice may order all the tests and scans that are needed during pregnancy, birth and in the care of a new baby, as well as ordering the necessary medications relating to pregnancy, birth and postnatal / newborn care.
  3. She doesn’t plan to have a home birth. Many women erroneously believe that one would only engage a private midwife for a homebirth.  Certainly, there are midwives who do work exclusively in home births, however many private midwives attend births wherever the woman feels is safest for her, and this may well include birth centres and hospitals.
  4. Only hippies would choose a midwife. Private midwifery care is not chosen by any particular group of women.  Women from all walks of life choose private midwifery care.
  5. She worries that private midwives cost too much. Cost is certainly an issue for some families.  Medicare benefits are available for services provided by eligible midwives in private practice.  Through my service, there is a range of options available with costs starting from $0 (after claiming back through Medicare).

Learn more about private midwifery care and antenatal shared care.