The National Health (Collaborative arrangements for Midwives) Determination of 2010 (This instrument determines the collaborative arrangements with the kinds of medical practitioners that an eligible midwife must participate in when providing midwifery treatment in order to satisfy the definition of 'authorised midwife'.). This Determination is clearly not working and needs to be amended or rescinded.
Obstetricians benefit from Eligible Midwives not being able to practice. Is it fair and equitable that this group can monopolise the market? Should the role of a collaborator be given to a Health Service or an independent body rather than a ‘named obstetrician’?
I am an Eligible Midwife and have a Medicare provider number. The government introduced the Maternity Reforms in 2010. With these reforms came the Determination for Midwives 2010. At the time of the Determination the then Minister of Health Nicola Roxon acknowledged that there were issues with the AMA but encouraged us (Midwives) to try and make the determination work. We are almost at the 2 year mark and this determination is not working. There is a multitude of evidence to show that obstetricians do not want to collaborate with midwives.
Here are some comments from Obstetricians
‘ I will do the birth you can do the rest’
‘I will not collaborate, I am happy with the status quo’
‘we do not support homebirth regardless of the risk, therefore I will not collaborate’
’I am very comfortable with the situation as it stands and I am not interested in supporting your model of care’
It seems that there is a condition with an offer to collaborate, which means that as a midwife I cannot work to my full potential. On the other hand, there are some private midwives so frustrated with the current political system, they have rescinded their registration and are working as birth attendants. These birth attendants support and assist women’s birth choices and are not responsible to any regulatory authority and are not insured. I wonder is this the answer?
This piece of legislation is a bad law it needs to be changed urgently to allow the Eligible Midwife to work as they were intended. That is to give women more choice, more continuity of midwifery care and for women to claim a Medicare rebate for those services.
Call or email your local member of Parliament and have you say: Ask for your right to see a Midwife and claim your Medicare rebate: