Since 2010 ACM has worked closely with the Commonwealth, midwifery leaders, insurance industry experts, and consumers to develop an appropriate Professional Indemnity Insurance solution for privately practising midwives offering homebirth. There is currently an insurance exemption in place and it is vital that an appropriate solution is developed before its expiry.
The safety of women and their babies is paramount, and ACM strongly advocates for the availability of a suitable professional indemnity insurance solution. While this is a major long term project, there is incremental change and we’ve seen some recent development in this space. ACM was instrumental in recent changes to the Medical Professional Indemnity Scheme (MPIS) that enables privately practising midwives to access professional indemnity insurance without having to be sole owners of a midwifery practice. This change provides greater flexibility for midwives in private practice and provides increased choice for women seeking private models of care.
Private practice midwives are a growing portion of the Australian midwifery workforce. Continuing work is vital to ensure that the increasing number of women seeking out private midwifery can access their preferred model of care. Evidence continues to demonstrate that midwifery continuity of care is gold standard and produces excellent outcomes for women and babies, yet less than 10% of women have access to these models of care. A viable insurance solution is integral to increasing access for women.