Thank you to those who voted/responded to my request for opinions, the results seem to echo the findings by professional surveys in that the majority considered the same midwife throughout labour to be of most importance. To be honest I was expecting that this wouldn’t be the conclusion. From my perspective as a woman giving birth, I couldn’t have cared who was there, as long as s/he attended to my needs, was competant and treated me like a real person and not just another ‘case’. It does throw up dilemmas though, we are supposed to be aiming at ‘one-to-one’ care during labour, but that doesn’t mean same midwife throughout, it just means that one midwife is only caring for one woman at a time. To then move to one-to-one care by the same midwife throughout is really throwing down the gauntlet, not sure how that could work even with a ‘domino’* system. There are days off, annual leave, sickness etc. and then there is the length of labour itself. Anyway, it has certainly left me with more than enough to ruminate on!
* Domino – The midwife who has provided throughout pregnancy then accompanies the woman to hospital and stays with her until after baby is born.
I have been laid low by yet another tooth abcess, according to my dentist it is down to grinding my teeth, something I am doing a great deal of recently. Working, whilst coping with tooth throbbing and jaw and ear aching, plus unable to take the pain-killers I yearned for was difficult but I am eternally grateful to one of our healthcare assistants who appeared at my clinic and helped it run to time by doing all the non-midwifery stuff. There is a box of choccies waiting for her to acknowledge her thoughtfulness toward a flagging colleague.
I have a Google alert set up to notify me of news articles, blogs etc which mention ‘midwife’, it also alerts me to posts on sites like Mumsnet where members have included ‘midwife’ in the title. On occassion I have rsponded to threads, generally to give advice but this week I read a thread which, at first, I was just sad about as the woman was not happy with her midwife. Then I read the replies, and I got really irritated by the tone of some of the respondants. What I should have done was clicked away from it but instead I put fingers to keyboard and fired off a reply (I blame the toothache). They gave as good as they got, the original author amended the title, but the tone was still so unsettling from some that I wish I hadn’t done it. It really makes me realise how little people understand the struggles within the maternity services now and are happy to keep demanding more from an already close to disintegrating system.
Memo to self, don’t read these sites, and if you do think once, think twice before replying.