Wednesday, July 30, 2008

MIPP Peer Review

Midwives working independently within the MiPP collective meet a couple of times each year for what we call Peer Review. This is, for us, an informal process based loosely on the New Zealand model of professional standards review.

"The concept that the individual midwife continues to develop and grow throughout her professional life forms the basis of [Peer Review]. By participating in a review, a midwife is demonstrating her commitment to her own ongoing professional development. Reflection on practice … provides the opportunity for midwives to learn from their own actions, and from the feedback they receive from clients. … Reflection with the members of the [Review] panel enables the midwife to explore her own practice issues in a supportive and confidential atmosphere. The fact that the midwife participates in a forum with peers (the profession) and consumer representatives (the public) demonstrates accountability for practice." (NZCOM 2001. Midwifery Standards Review)

Due to our small numbers, and our inability to commit to a particular time because we may be called to attend a birth, our Peer Review meetings follow a less structured path than is currently followed in New Zealand, or in the Australian College of Midwives' Midwifery Practice Review (MPR). The MPR encourages midwives to undergo a detailed self-assessment and self-reflection exercise; a face to face review discussion with a specially prepared midwife and consumer; and receive guidance and support in developing a personal Professional Development Plan.

In summary, Peer Review:

  • Is voluntary
  • Is confidential. The summary data provided contains no features identifying clients or other professionals or institutions. Members participating in a peer review agree to maintain confidence about the midwife, and the information discussed.
  • Supports the individual midwife's professional development.

1 comment:

Joy Johnston said...

We met thismorning (Monday) for the Peer Review session. Belinda and Kim came from the Peninsula; Karen, Helen and Andrea came from the Eastern suburbs; Kim joined in via Skype from Bairnsdale; and we welcomed a midwifery graduate and student who are setting their sights on community practice.
In reviewing our caseload numbers and outcomes we were able to draw attention to some of the challenges as well as high points in being 'with woman'.
Case presentations gave opportunities for more in-depth reflection and discussion. We are proud to be midwives, whether the birthing journey proceeds without fuss in the home, or if we accompany women in our care to hospital.
A recurrent theme in telling our stories is our trust in the processes of normal birth. We don't need sensational stories - although we all have a few! It's the ordinary yet unique story of protecting and promoting normal birth that sustains us in the work, and keeps us renewing our commitment to women and their families.