A recent newspaper article has sparked much discussion and debate. It centres around the release of data gathered from five years of statistical data around intervention rates in NSW following the implementation of a NSW Health policy directive around normal birth (Towards Normal Birth). The basic outcome has not been achieved, that of increasing rates of normal vaginal birth and reducing caesarean section rates through NSW. Many ideas have been suggested as to why these targets have not been achieved. Overall, intervention rates have increased drastically within the system of private obstetric care, and despite the implementation of public hospital caseload midwifery models of care during the past few years, rates of intervention have not reduced significantly. We have also not seen any expansion in birth centres or birth centre care which is so popular amongst women. The only model of care that has been demonstrated over time to result in significant reductions in intervention rates such as caesareans, inductions and epidurals, is independent / private midwifery. However, as a non-standard care option, it is seldom offered to women and is generally only available to a self-selecting group of women who seek it out.
Melissa Maimann is an eligible midwife in private practice in Sydney. One of the first eligible midwives in Australia, Melissa offers a range of care options for women. Visit Melissa's website to learn more about her services.