News and Notices

Women and newborns: The heart of midwifery

IDM2016 leaderboardTo celebrate International Day of the Midwife on 5 May, every baby born in the Nelson Marlborough region in May will be given handcrafted woolen clothing.

These gifts are courtesy of a dedicated number of knitters in our community who Associate Director of Midwifery Debbie Fisher says cannot be thanked enough for their time and skill.

“Not only do woolen booties, singlets and hats keep babies warm, they also allow moisture to escape,” Debbie says.

“Wool, cotton and bamboo are the safest fabrics for baby clothes and blankets, unless polar-fleece and other polyester fabrics that are very good at trapping moisture and letting heat out.”

The theme of the International Day of the Midwife this year is ‘Women and Newborns: The Heart of Midwifery.”

To celebrate the achievements of our region’s midwives and the progress made nationwide in improving material and neonatal care and midwifery services, Debbie has organised morning and afternoon teas at both Nelson and Wairau hospitals.

There will also be public information stalls at Richmond Mall and Seymour Square in Nelson and Blenheim respectively.

Debbie says that visitors to the stalls will be offered light refreshments, and can take home freebies and talk to midwives about subjects such as how to safely swaddle an infant.

The International Day of the Midwife is about celebrating the trust and confidence that women have in their midwives and the quality care that midwives provide, Debbie says.

“We have a really good variety of midwives and midwifery expertise in the Nelson Marlborough region. Our facilities for expectant parents span rural services, birthing centers, water-births and homebirths. Many of our midwives are qualified in non-pharmacological pain relief methods such as acupuncture.”

For Debbie, a practicing midwife, being with parents on their journey to having a baby is one of the best things about her work.

“Seeing the changes and development that women and men go through as they become mothers and fathers is very special – as is being present at a women’s birth.”

The New Zealand College of Midwives has produced two ‘birth journey’ videos for the day.Sorry - videos are no longer available.