Central Albertans gather to celebrate midwives

They aren’t doctors, but for some women midwives are the ideal choice to help them through their pregnancy or birth.

On Saturday on the International Day of the Midwife, about 60 people attended the celebratory event at Red Deer City Hall Park.

Linnea Deutscher, a mother, grandmother, registered nurse and longtime midwifery advocate, organized the rally in Red Deer.

“It’s a celebration of our Central Alberta midwives,” said Deutscher, adding four midwives joined in the celebration now in its third year.

“Our birth community is very busy. We have lots of doulas here that work with midwives.”

The main purpose of the rally was to educate and promote midwives and their funding.

“We have to remind the government that this is something we want, this is something good and ultimately it saves taxpayer dollars,” said Deutscher. “It’s a total win-win. The funding is coming, but it’s slow.

“The demand is far greater the supply of midwife care. We want choice for all Alberta women.”

Deutscher said midwives are specialists in “normal birth,” which she defined as uncomplicated and low-risk births.

They have an at least four year education to be a midwife, including nurses who have gone on to further their education.

Deutscher said those who do get accepted into a midwife practice during their pregnancy have longer appointments, build a rapport with a midwife and have the midwife attend the birth.

“The person who attends your birth is always somebody that you know,” said Deutscher. “You can have a home birth with a midwife, you can have a water birth or you can have a hospital birth. That’s what makes them special.”


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