Registered midwives are primary care providers who are experts in pregnancy, birth and postpartum care. You usually will work with a small team of midwives, so we get to know each other. Registered midwives can order all your routine prenatal lab tests, ultrasounds, and prescribe basic medications during the pregnancy and postpartum. If complications arise in your care, your midwife will consult the appropriate care provider (e.g. obstetrician, nurse practitioner, family doctor, paediatrician) and remains in a supportive role to you and your family.
You can choose to have a midwife or a doctor, not both. As midwives are experts in low-risk pregnancy and birth. Midwifery clients will not see a physician unless there are concerns or complications. If complications arise, midwives can consult with physicians or, if necessary, transfer a client’s care to a physician. If care is transferred, midwives continue to support their clients and resume primary care when it is possible. You don’t need a referral from a doctor to have a midwife, just contact us directly.
A midwife is not a doula. A birth doula is a trained labour support person who provides emotional and physical support to those giving birth and their families. While not medical professionals, doulas can offer a wide range of comfort measures. You would find and pay your doula yourself, as doula services are not covered by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. If you are considering having a doula at your birth, talk about it with your midwife.