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Who we are

The Australian College of Midwives (ACM) is a national not-for-profit membership organisation and the peak professional body for midwives in Australia. It was created when independent local and state based organisations came together to create a stronger, single voice for the midwifery profession.

Together we are working towards building a resilient midwifery workforce for the future by advocating for the profession at a government level, promoting the benefits of midwifery care to the wider community and ensuring midwives in Australia are supported with industry information, professional development and personal support through all stages of their careers.

Our Vision: To enable strong and confident midwives

Our Mission: To position and profile midwifery as the primary profession for quality maternity care

ACM believes all women should have access to a known midwife during pregnancy as the ‘continuity of midwifery care’ model is the Gold Standard of maternity care in Australia. There is plenty of evidence to prove this fact. Here are the stats!

With midwifery-led care you are more likely to:

  • have a normal birth;
  • have your baby at term and healthy;
  • have a positive experience of labour and birth;
  • be satisfied with your maternity care;
  • successfully breastfeed your baby; and
  • cost the health system less.

And place of birth matters too. The odds of normal labour and birth are more than twice as high in planned birth centre births than in hospitals. You are also:

  • 19% less likely to lose your baby before 24 weeks;
  • 24% less likely to experience Pre term birth;
  • 16% less likely to have an episiotomy;
  • 6% less likely to have a caesarean;
  • More likely to breastfeed successfully; and
  • More likely to have a positive birth experience.

Homer CSE, Cheah SL, Rossiter C, et al, Maternal and perinatal outcomes by planned place of birth in Australia 2000 – 2012: a linked population data study. BMJ Open 2019;9:e029192. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2019-029192

The midwifery philosophy

Midwife means ‘with woman’; this underpins midwifery’s philosophy, work and relationships.

Midwifery:

  • is founded on respect for women and on a strong belief in the value of women’s work, bearing and rearing each generation.
  • considers women in pregnancy, childbirth and early parenting to be undertaking healthy processes that are profound and precious events in each woman’s life. These events are also inherently important to society as a whole.
  • protects and enhances the health and social status of women, which in turn protects and enhances the health and wellbeing of society.
  • is a woman-centred, political, primary health care discipline founded on the relationship between a woman and her midwife.
  • focuses on a woman’s health needs, her expectations and aspirations.
  • encompasses the needs of the woman’s baby, and the woman's family, her other important relationships and community, as identified and negotiated by the woman herself.
  • is holistic and recognises each woman’s social, emotional, physical, spiritual and cultural needs, expectations and context as defined by the woman herself.
  • recognises every woman’s right to self-determination in attaining choice, control and continuity of care from one or more known caregivers.
  • recognises every woman’s responsibility to make informed decisions for herself, her baby and her family with assistance, when requested, from health professionals.
  • is informed by scientific evidence, by collective and individual experience, and by intuition.
  • aims to follow each woman through pregnancy, labour and birth and the postnatal period, across the transition between institutions and the community, so she remains connected to her social support systems; the focus remaining on the woman, not on the institutions or the professionals involved.
  • includes collaboration with and consultation between health professionals.

Inspired by work from: New Zealand College of Midwives, Nursing Council of New Zealand, Nursing and Midwifery Council UK (formerly UKCC/ENB), Royal College of Midwives, College of Midwives of British Columbia, College of Midwives of Ontario, Australian College of Midwives, Nurses Board of Victoria, Nursing Council of Queensland, the World Health Organization, Guilliland and Pairman (1995), Leap (2004).