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We don’t say thank you enough

A wonderful piece about my friend @Dianethemidwife

Student Top Tips

(I wrote this on the International Day of the Midwife)

On March 11th 2008, my wife Sally was pretty busy. About two weeks later than expected, she was giving birth to our son at home with two midwives caring for her and me hanging on for dear life. We (i.e. Sally) had decided on a home because her experience of hospital birth hadn’t been all that positive because of demoralised staff and there being nowhere near enough of them. We had rented a “birthing pool” in which our elder son learned to swim and the emptying and filling had given me something to do. I think I should hold some sort of record for draining-cleaning-filling-warming of birthing pools.

And so it came to pass, our beautiful baby was born in our kitchen. It was with relief and joy (but mostly relief), we saw our baby. Sally was magnificent and…

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#IDM2016 – Celebrating #Kindness to other #WeMidwives & Ourselves with @WeMidwives @world_midwives & @MidwivesRCM

I am blogging today in order to celebrate the International Day of the Midwife hosted by @world_midwives. This event is going from strength to strength, am I especially excited about some of the themes being highlighted this year!

The @WeMidwives community is celebrating the fact that “Kindness to others & yourself -does improve workplace health” – They ask that we share how we care for ourselves and one another as midwives.

The International Confederation of Midwives (ICM – @world_midwives) are also on board with this, announcing that we all must: Nourish the support system among midwives » Have a celebratory event where midwives can meet each other and learn about each other’s challenges and achievements and share coping mechanisms to support each other.

Also, @world_midwives have promoted another great activity: ‘I Am A Midwife, This Is What I Do’

They are inviting midwives to share the work they do using the “I am a midwife, this is what I do” activity on social media as a celebration of midwifery around the world. In their example they show a “Technical midwife adviser” – It is wonderful to see a wide range of midwifery roles being celebrated. This reminds us that you don’t have to be on the front line to contribute greatly to the profession. Research midwives, technical midwives, midwife educators and policy advisers all shape and contribute to the midwifery profession in their own unique way. The important thing to do is to embrace our diversity within the profession and unite in camaraderie and support for one another.

Last week, just ahead of #IDM2016, the Royal College of Midwives (@MidwivesRCM) launched their new guidance on ‘Work-Related Stress’ for heads of midwifery and individual midwives themselves.

RCM - ‘Work-Related Stress’.

I was thrilled to have our latest paper cited and referenced within this guidance as follows:

All this [Work-related stress] damages productivity and can affect outcomes for women. The research paper ‘Midwives Overboard!’ states: “Midwifery care aims to support optimal outcomes in childbearing. If, when caring for women, the potential consequences for midwives are ignored, we risk their capability to provide midwifery care to the high levels they aspire to. This threatens the very eminence of midwifery as a profession.” It also says: “Ethically, midwives are entitled to a psychologically safe professional journey… when maternity services invest in the mental health and wellbeing of midwives they may reap the rewards of improved patient care, improved staff experience and safer maternity services.”

Click here to see the full paper

So it really does seem that this topic I feel so passionate about is really gaining some much needed attention, and I am thrilled to influence guidance from my professional body is this way.

For made their theme “Workplace Stress: a collective challenge” free to read! Everyone is getting involved 🙂

Our own research project which explores what  for health care staff continues to thrive via @NHSStaffExp Please use the  hashtag to contribute your thoughts.

See full details here →  ..Please spread the word 🙂

Also, please check out The Virtual International Day of the Midwife     A great 24 hour conference for  – Catch up with the seminars online when you can!

Lastly, my favorite charity – is hosting many Muffins for Midwives events and is asking people to tag themselves and their muffins in photos for  – YUM!

Until next time….Take care of yourselves, and each other.