WEDNESDAY, MAY 5, 2021
Today is International Day of the Midwife. It is a special day of recognition, celebrated each year on the 5th of May. Midwives take on an all-important role for families navigating a journey through the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) or Special Care Nursery (SCN). Today is a chance for us to recognise the amazing work and contribution to maternal and newborn health these midwives provide. The theme of 2021’s International Day of the Midwife is ‘Follow the Data: Invest in Midwives’.
According to research from the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM), investing in midwives saves lives, improves health and strengthens health systems. ICM say increasing investment in midwives could save up to 4.3 million lives around the world every year by averting 67% of maternal deaths, 64% of neonatal deaths, and 65% of stillbirths.
Here in Australia, we know how important midwives are when it comes to improving the health outcomes for families, including our First Nations communities. Professor Sue Kildea wants to see more Indigenous midwives encouraged into Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander birthing practices; after she was involved in redesigning an Indigenous maternity service in Brisbane that was able to halve the Aboriginal premature birth rate in just four years.
The support and guidance of midwives is also a common theme shared again and again in Miracle family stories. Here are just some of the amazing moments midwives have touched the lives of our Miracle families:
“I ended up having a massive breakdown and I am so lucky that I had a brave and very empathetic midwife. She quickly and quietly, organised for my bed to be wheeled into NICU for ten minutes. After ten hours, I finally met her [my baby]! The nurses were nothing short of spectacular and offered a shoulder to cry on many times.” Emily, Miracle Mum to Chloe born at 32 weeks.
“We will forever be grateful to the incredible midwives … who have become like a second family to us. It takes a special type of person to work in a NICU, and their care and kindness during one of the most difficult times in our lives will never be forgotten.” Miracle family Zac, Rosie & Arkie.
“I truly cannot thank the hospital and every single nurse in NICU and my midwife Tionie, enough for their support.” Marleigh, Miracle mum to Makenzie born at 25 weeks.
“With help from the amazing team of midwives, obstetricians, NICU doctors and nurses we welcomed our little girl Tillie into the world at 25+4weeks. We will be forever grateful to the amazing, dedicated, talented miracle working … nurses within NICU, without those amazing people our beautiful babies wouldn’t be here today.” Wendy, Miracle mum to twins Tillie & Brayden born at 25 weeks.
“I had a strange feeling something was wrong. The amazing midwife trusted my instincts and began monitoring and within an hour I was wheeled down to birth suite with bub entering into severe distress.” Wendy, Miracle mum to Madeline born at 26 weeks.
“I had a student midwife following my pregnancy and she was always there to answer questions and provide ongoing support. Having a student midwife was the best decision I ever made, not only did she provide me support and reassured me, but it was also provided to my partner who was in shock during the whole process.” Samantha, Miracle mum to premmies Zara & Malia.
On behalf of our Miracles thank you to all the midwives who helped them arrive safely.