Your Lead Maternity Carer
In the Nelson Marlborough region your maternity care will be provided free of charge (if eligible) by a Lead Maternity Carer (LMC).
Most LMCs are midwives, and some GPs and obstetricians are also LMCs.
You can choose a community-based midwife  or a hospital-based midwife for your care during your pregnancy, labour and birth and for the first six weeks after your baby is born. You can choose to birth at home, in a primary maternity unit or at a hospital.
Midwives are experts in normal pregnancy and childbirth and can provide all of your maternity care when your pregnancy, childbirth and post-natal period are normal. If your midwife is concerned about the wellbeing of you or your baby at any time, she will refer you to an obstetrician at either Nelson or Wairau hospital for advice or medical care.
During your pregnancy your midwife will see you regularly to monitor your health and the baby’s wellbeing. Often this will be done at a midwife’s clinic or rooms, or she may visit you in your home. She will support and advise you throughout your pregnancy, ensuring that you and your baby remain in optimal health.
Your LMC or midwife will provide care for up to six weeks following the birth of your baby. Your midwife will visit you daily whilst you are in hospital and then regularly at home.  If you have had your baby at home, they will provide all of your care following your birth at your home as often as necessary.
If you give birth in hospital, a hospital-based midwife will care for you and your baby.
Your LMC will refer you for ultrasound scans during your pregnancy. These are free of charge in Nelson and Marlborough.
Anti-natal and parenting classes
Your LMC will encourage you and your partner to attend childbirth education (anti-natal) classes.
Parenting and pregnancy education is mostly provided by Wairau and Nelson maternity services and Parents Centres. Additional programmes such as hypno-birthing are also available in some areas. In Golden Bay, midwives provide parenting and pregnancy education.
Specialist services
Specialist hospital services available to you include:
  • obstetric and paediatric specialists
  • Pukenga Hauora cultural support services
  • diabetes nursing teams
  • counseling
  • physiotherapy
  • mental health liaison support and other hospital services.
Within the community, midwives also work with:
  • Plunket
  • Tamariki Ora services
  • general practice
  • social workers
  • breastfeeding support groups
  • the Postnatal Depression Support Network and other community-based support groups