|ARM 2013 - click to enlarge|
"central to maternity care: the midwife caring for the mother and providing a safe space in which she can develop confidence in her own ability to give birth and mother her baby." (ARM 2013, p3)
Last year, 2013, the UK Association for Radical Midwives (ARM) published its New Vision for Maternity Care.
The basic principles are copied in this post. The Vision document is only 16 pages, and well worth the read. In the Conclusion, ARM states:
"This is our New Vision for the maternity services of the future. We wish to change the perceptions of the general public about birth and about midwives so that we can practise the profession for which we have been trained. Organisational change and financial and educational input is needed to start the process. Once women know other women who have experienced birth with continuity of care and real autonomy, whether at home or in hospital, this care will be expected. This new standard of care will bring about improved clinical outcomes for mother and baby, substantial savings for the NHS and positive cultural change within maternity services and the wider public. Babies whose mothers have a more confident start to motherhood will have a happier and healthier start to life.
Midwives are unique in their combination of skill, sensitivity and training to be 'with woman' through one of life's landmark experiences which has long-term effects on the individual, the family and society as a whole. We must generate a new respect for both motherhood and midwifery. We owe it to ourselves and to future generations."