If you would like to access Midwifery care with Lisa and live in Central Alberta, please inquire about booking in with her through Prairie Midwives.
What Is A Midwife?
Midwives are autonomous, primary maternity care specialists who are experts in normal birth and are funded through Alberta Health Services. Midwives provide compassionate, non-authoritarian, individualized, evidence based clinical care during the prenatal period, labour, birth and up to six weeks postpartum that reflects and respects the birthing person’s identity, personal values, autonomy and knowledge about their body, their pregnancy and their own unique circumstances.
Obstetricians are secondary/tertiary maternity care specialists who care for birthing people who have pregnancies with complex medical needs. If you develop higher medical needs during your pregnancy, Midwives (as well as Family Physicians) are able to consult and work in collaboration with Obstetricians who can manage complex medical needs and provide access to surgical birth options (caesarean section).
No matter who you choose to care for you during your pregnancy, it’s important that you feel supported, respected and safe with your caregiver.
The Midwifery Model Of Care
Midwives view pregnancy and birth as normal family life events and understand that labour and birth work best when the birthing person feels private, safe and undisturbed (Buckley, 2016).
- Longer, individualized prenatal appointments (45-60 minutes).
- Trauma-informed midwifery care that recognizes that pregnant people often have intersecting experiences throughout their lives that may make accessing reproductive healthcare more challenging.
- Space for partners and chosen support people to ask questions and to receive support of their own.
- Routine prenatal wellness visits (listening to fetal heart rate, belly measurements, palpating fetal position, blood pressure checks, informed choice discussions).
- Every 4-5 weeks in clinic until ~28 weeks.
- Every 2-3 weeks in clinic until ~36 weeks.
- Weekly visits in clinic until birth.
- Home visits on days one, three and five postpartum.
- Clinic visits at two, four and six weeks postpartum.
- Nutritional counselling, holistic information and/or referral to alternative therapies or practitioners.
- Birth preparation that addresses parents’ physical, emotional and spiritual needs through pregnancy, birth and early parenting.
- Informed choice for all pregnancy options, tests and interventions. This generally involves:
- Information sharing around topics such as routine ultrasound, lab-work, genetic testing, nutrition, birth choices and common interventions.
- Discussion around current standards of care and clinical recommendations.
- Exploring topics in depth, including the reason why the test/intervention is offered, what the hoped for benefits are, what the possible unwanted side effects may be if accepting or declining as well as any available alternatives.
- Time for the birthing person to ask questions and to process information before making an informed decision.
- Respect, acceptance and support for your choices.
- Birth Story Listening for previous birth or traumatic life experiences.
- Open communication around your needs, questions, concerns and decision making. If an aspect of your prenatal care is not working for you, please let Lisa know.
Supporting Your Legal Right To Choice
While Midwives share information, make recommendations and are responsible for providing skilled, competent clinical care during the childbearing year, parents and families are responsible for considering all information available to them, assessing their own personal risk tolerance, making their own informed choices (to accept or decline recommendations) and for owning the outcomes of those choices.
Pregnant people have the legal human right to make medical decisions about their pregnancies and births and should expect their choices to be respected, even if their choices make others uncomfortable. Pregnant people should always feel safe to say “No” or decline a recommendation without fear of coercion, being treated badly, or being abandoned by their caregiver.
All caregivers have a legal and ethical responsibility to respect client decision making.