It’s that time of year again when all good midwives have to notify their intention to practise to The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). A form is sent through which the midwife has to complete and then it has to be signed by the named Supervisor of Midwives (SoM). The role of the SOM is to ‘provide support and advice to midwives to ensure their practice is consistent with the regulatory framework. The purpose of supervision of midwives is to protect women and babies by actively promoting a safe standard of midwifery practice.’ Blah, blah. It’s not that I have any problem with supervision, it should, hopefully, ensure that all midwives keep up to date and are safe practitioners but, what about the system itself? It’s wonderful that all midwives are supervised, regulated but if their working environment allows unsafe situations to arise, I’m thinking lack of equipment, insufficient staff then it takes an age for anything to be done, Northwick Park being a good example. How many maternal deaths were there before the Healthcare Commission stepped in? It was 10 and it was over a 3 year period. What good is it, ensuring all the midwives are, in essence, safe practitioners when the Trust they are employed by does not have safe staffing levels of midwives or doctors?
Anyway, I spoke to my Supervisor as I couldn’t remember when my last supervisory interview was, apparently it was last February so my next one is due imminently, we have agreed that it can be safely left until after I return to work and in the meantime she is happy to sign my form for me. That’s a relief!