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Does N.S. have critical shortage of midwives?

Midwives are in such hot demand in this province that some women delay childbirth or even relocate to get one, according to a consumer group report.

Midwives are in such hot demand in this province that some women delay childbirth or even relocate to get one, according to a consumer group report.

The Midwifery Coalition of Nova Scotia publicly released their report yesterday called Uncomfortable Positions: Consumer Comments on Midwifery Implementation in Nova Scotia. They submitted it to the province, which is evaluating their efforts to regulate midwifes in three areas in the province.

“Our problem is we haven’t heard about a timeline and a plan for making it available for all women across the province,” said Christine Saulnier of the coalition. “And that’s what we’ve heard from women.”

The IWK Health Centre was given funding for two full-time and two part-time midwives.

Since last year, 552 women applied to have a midwife through the IWK, and 173 were accepted.

Ann McCabe, director, Women’s and Newborn’s Health, said some of those applicants wouldn’t have been accepted because they were considered high risk.

“But we still have to send people we would like to accept away,” she said. “I don’t know how many, because we’re only funded for three full-time equivalent (midwife positions).”

 
 
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