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Putting Women’s Health First

November 28th 2012

Status of Waikato DHB Women’s Health - Putting Women’s Health First

The NZ College of Midwives is very encouraged to read the Review Panels recommendations of the Status of Waikato DHB Women’s Health and commends the DHB for commissioning the report.

“For many years now the College has reported its concerns about the staffing situation at Waikato Women’s hospital’, says Chief Executive Karen Guilliland. “The pressures on the entire midwifery workforce in the Waikato region has been longstanding and has disadvantaged both women and midwives”

The College has not understood the DHB structure which sees the mixing of non-maternity surgical and medical patients with pregnant and postpartum women, and agrees with the reviewers that this must be rectified. As a result of past staffing and structural decisions, midwife LMCs have had to carry an excessive responsibility when there have been no consultants on site for consultation. The College welcomes the DHBs commitment to support LMCs and its core midwives and registrars with a more appropriate staff number and mix. The College also believes some of the existing difficulties with seamless transfers from community to hospital care and back again will also be addressed by the changes recommended.

“Good referral pathways and communication channels are essential to a well run maternity service and the recommendations identify ways to assist the DHB to action any shortcomings. The DHBs acceptance of the need to review and restructure its leadership roles to provide supportive frameworks for its workforce is also very welcome” Karen Guilliland says.

The College looks forward to working with the DHB to help implement the recommendations.


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