chapter  5
14 Pages

‘Relationships – the glue that holds it all together’: Midwifery continuity of care and sustainability

ByNICKY LEAP, HANNAH DAHLEN, PAT BRODIE

In late December 2009, four midwifery leaders sat around a kitchen table in Sydney and audio-recorded a conversation about experiences of developing midwifery models of care. With this chapter in mind, we focussed on what we saw as features of sustainable models that enable women to develop a trusting relationship with their midwives through pregnancy, labour and the early weeks of new motherhood. Mostly we reflected on our experiences of setting up midwifery group practices in the Australian public health system where midwives are employed, but some of us also drew on our experiences in the United Kingdom (UK) and New Zealand (NZ); this included our involvement in models where midwives are self-employed and working either privately or as part of the public health system.