13 C
Tuesday, October 22, 2019
Connecting Our Communities

New funds for local midwives

St. Jacobs provider receives new funding as province expands midwifery services


Kitchener-Conestoga too close to call

With less than five percentage points separating the Conservatives and Liberals in the riding, Kitchener-Conestoga has become too close...

Meet the candidates

By Veronica Reiner & Aneta Rebiszewski Five candidates are vying for your vote in...

Community rallies to support teen diagnosed with leukemia

The community is rallying in support of an Elmira family coping with their son’s leukemia diagnosis, raising more...

Candidates make pitch to voters in Woolwich

Largely sticking to their respective party lines, the five candidates running in the Kitchener-Conestoga riding made their one all-candidates...
Veronica Reiner
Veronica Reinerhttp://www.observerxtra.com
Veronica Reiner is a Reporter Photographer for The Observer.

St. Jacobs Midwives will receive $232,000 as part of the provincial government’s $28-million expansion plan for midwifery services in Ontario.

Health Minister Christine Elliott was in the village Monday morning to make the announcement, joined by Kitchener-Conestoga MPP Mike Harris.

“This additional funding will mean more expecting families across Ontario will be able to access quality care from a midwife during pregnancy, labour, and birth as well as six weeks of support once the baby is born,” said Elliott.

St. Jacobs Midwives serves residents in the Woolwich and Wellesley townships, as well as Kitchener, Waterloo, Wilmot, and surrounding rural areas.

Rosslyn Bentley, executive director of Woolwich Community Health Centre, said that there are between 40 and 60 families at any given time waiting for the services of a midwife.

“It’s a very popular choice with many of the families locally,” said Bentley. “It’s a very cost-effective way of delivering care, as well and really excellent results for low-risk women, which is the vast majority of people that are expecting a baby.”

In addition to potentially clearing that waitlist across Waterloo Region, the funding could allow the organization to hire new midwives.

“We have a challenge locally in that there are already 10 midwifery spaces funded at the St. Jacobs midwives. Unfortunately, because they are only granted so many spaces for privileges at Grand River Hospital, we’ve currently only got nine midwives instead of 10,” said Bentley. “So we hope that with this funding, the hospital will perhaps re-examine its submitting privileges and allow for all of the funded midwifery spots to be able to do admissions.”

If the organization can receive hospital privileges, it intends to fill those vacant positions and to seek room for two new registrants.

In addition to aiding existing midwifery services, the provincial money is expected to support up to 90 new graduates entering the field, help midwifery groups acquire new technology and expand Indigenous midwifery programs.

“I am also proud to announce that our government is working to responsibly expand the scope of practice for midwives to allow them to prescribe more medications to clients,” said Elliott. “This change will empower midwives to better use their education and training, to provide great choice and convenience for families, and reduce time for patients to wait for medications and therapies.”

Other health care providers receiving funding include Guelph Midwives at $137,767, Family Midwifery Care of Guelph getting $95,042, and Blue Heron Midwives with $13,880.

Bentley added that the funding announcement came somewhat out of the blue just late last week.

“It was something that the Ontario Association of Midwifery has been lobbying for, for some time,” said Bentley. “It wasn’t anything we knew was on the horizon, so this was a pleasant surprise.”

There are some 900 midwives in Ontario, serving 89 communities across the province. This year, more than 29,000 families will have the care of a midwife, according to the association, with the new funding allowing room for another 3,400.

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to The Observer's online community. Pseudonyms are not permitted. By submitting a comment, you accept that The Observer has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner The Observer chooses. Please note that The Observer does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our submission guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.


Scaring up some Halloween fun in Elmira

Those in search of the Halloween spirit need look no further than the vibrant, spooky display at an Elmira heritage home, an experience that adds a charitable aspect into the mix.

In Print. Online. In Pictures. In Depth.

You obviously love community journalism. Thanks for visiting today. If you have a great local story, let us know.

Pa(i)r for the course

The EDSS girls’ and boys’ golf teams teed up a strong showing at the Central Western Ontario Secondary Schools Association (CWOSSA) regionals, and are...

Sugar Kings double up on Stratford Warriors to continue hot streak

Home and away, it was a good weekend for the Elmira Sugar Kings as they twice bested the Stratford Warriors, extending their winning streak...

The songs are standards, the show is anything but

Performing together for what they thought was a one-off show, Micah Barnes and Jackie Richardson found there was more than a little chemistry. That...

Woolwich prepares input to province on gravel pit policy

Woolwich is preparing its two cents as the province looks to overhaul the Aggregate Resources Act (ARA). The township plans to submit comments during...
- Advertisement -