The Royal College of Midwives are passionate about midwifery and hope to inspire students to embark on a rewarding career supporting women and their families through pregnancy, childbirth and the early days of parenting. The Royal College of Midwives is the only professional organisation and trade union dedicated to serving midwifery and the whole midwifery team. They provide workplace advice and support, professional and clinical guidance and information, and learning opportunities with their broad range of events, conferences and online resources.
They would like to offer information surrounding choosing midwifery as a career. They have included two of their latest publications: ’The State of Maternity Services Report 2018 – Scotland’ and also ‘Midwifery in Scotland: into the 2020s’, to share with students who may be interested in pursuing midwifery as a career.
They wanted to ensure that you are aware that there are now job opportunities and vacancies for newly qualified midwives all over Scotland – this is a very different situation from the situation experienced a few years ago where there weren’t many jobs available. This is a result of a larger number of midwives retiring over the last few years.
Have you thought about a career in midwifery? Do you know what the role of a midwife involves?
Being a midwife is more than just delivering babies. A midwife is usually the first and main contact for woman during pregnancy, throughout labour and the early postnatal period. She/he is responsible for providing care and supporting women to make informed choices about their care. The role of the midwife is very diverse. Clinical examinations, providing health and parent education and supporting the mother and her family throughout the childbearing process are only a few roles that a midwife will carry out. The midwife also works in partnership with other health and social care services to meet individual mothers’ needs, for example, teenage mothers, mothers who are socially excluded, disabled mothers and mothers from diverse ethnic backgrounds.
Today, a large number of midwives do significant work within the community, providing their services to local clinics, women’s homes, GP surgeries and children’s centres. They also have the option to take up a hospital-based job. In a hospital setting, midwives get numerous opportunities to work in the antenatal and labour as well as the postnatal wards.
As a midwife, your qualifications and midwifery experience will open up a range of options for career development and you can choose the path that suits you best. Some midwives pursue careers in midwifery education and research, others specialise in caring for women with mental health problems or substance misuse issues, others develop additional skills in ultrasound scanning or sexual health. Midwives work in dense urban areas or remote and rural communities in the Highlands and Islands.
Midwives need to have empathy, they need great communication skills and the desire to serve their local community. Midwives need to be curious and interested in learning about people, human relationships and physiology and psychology. Midwives need to be able to translate their learning into responding effectively to rapidly emerging emergency situations, providing life saving care when it is needed. Midwives need to be able to work autonomously and also to work collaboratively with others in teams.
If you are interested in a health related career you are recommended to seek out opportunities to spend time with and talk to a midwife in your local area before applying to understand more about the role.
It is hoped that the new Royal College of Midwives publication and report highlights the need for new student midwives and generates interest in following this career path.
If you would like to receive further information regarding The Royal College of Midwives or careers in midwifery, you can get in touch, or visit our website at www.rcm.org.uk
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Alternatively you can speak with your Careers Adviser or Mr Colgan for more advice.