Canadian Model of Midwifery Practice
While there are provincial/territorial differences in how midwifery is legislated, organized, and practised, the basic model of midwifery practice is the same across all regulated jurisdictions in Canada. Midwives provide care from early pregnancy through to at least six-weeks postpartum to women and their infants.
Health and Well-being
Midwifery care in Canada is based on a respect for pregnancy and childbirth as normal physiological processes. Midwives promote wellness in women, babies, and families, taking the social, emotional, cultural and physical aspects of a womanâ€™s reproductive experience into consideration.
Canadian midwives respect the right of women to make informed choices about all aspects of their care. Midwives actively encourage informed decision-making by providing women with complete, relevant, and objective information in a non-authoritarian manner.
Autonomous Care Providers
Canadian midwives are fully responsible for the provisionof primary health services within their scope of practice, making autonomous decisions in collaboration with their clients. When midwives identify conditions requiring care that is outside of their scope of practice, they make referrals to other care providers and continue to provide supportive care. Midwives collaborate with other health professionals in order to ensure that their clients receive the best possible care.
Continuity of Care
Canadian midwives are committed to working in partnership with the women in their care. Midwives spend time with their clients in order to build trusting relationships and provide individualized care. Individual or small groups of midwives provide continuity of care to women throughout pregnancy, labour, birth, and up to at least six weeks postpartum. A midwife known to the woman is available on-call throughout her care.
Choice of Birth Setting
Canadian midwives respect the right of each woman to make an informed choice about the setting for her birth. Midwives must be competent and willing to provide care in a variety of settings, including home, birth centres, and hospitals.
Canadian midwives are expected to stay up-to-date with regard to research on maternity care issues, to critically appraise research, and to incorporate relevant findings into their care.
Clients are women who have contracted to work with and receive care from a specific midwife or midwives.