Midwives provide quality care for mothers, babies and families in hospitals and in communities around New Zealand.
Midwives have an important role in improving health outcomes in our communities. They understand that every childbearing woman deserves to give birth within a safe and supported environment for herself and her baby.
On this page you'll find items of professional interest to midwives.
FSANZ - Minimum Age Labelling of Foods for Infants
Proposal P274 – Minimum Age Labelling of Foods for Infants FSANZ is proposing to align the labelling requirements of the infant foods of the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code with the current infant feeding guidelines in both countries. The issue is the label recommendation of the age at which babies should move to solid food from breast milk. Allergy risk is increased with solid foods introduced to infants before four months; the critical period of risk is 4 -7 months, but evidence is not conclusive according to the consultation paper link below consultation paper. Randomised trials are currently underway. http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/code/proposals/Documents/P274-Labelinfantfoods-ConsP.pdf
Proposed amendments to Standard 2.9.2 include
- youngest minimum age declaration required on a label of an infant food is ‘around 6 months’ and for this wording to be displayed on first-stage weaning foods
- the age (number) should always appear on the front of the food label.
- A warning statement ‘not before 4 months of age’ is proposed to apply only to foods labelled as ‘around 6 months’ however, the placement of that statement need not be in association with the minimum age statement.
FSANZ notes that a statement indicating the consistency of the food continues to be required. Consequential amendments and a small number of corrections to the Standard are also proposed.
Feedback Due: Please send comments to Policy Analyst, Marilyn Head firstname.lastname@example.org, 04 494 6372 by November 1, 2013
Introducing Find Your Midwife
Find Your Midwife is a new website service that allows women to quickly and easily find an available midwife in their area.
The Find Your Midwife service has been developed by the New Zealand College of Midwives with funding from the Ministry of Health. If you log onto the website www.findyourmidwife.co.nz now you will see how user-friendly it is. With a few clicks of a mouse, the service enables women to locate local midwives available on their due date, rather than having to make multiple telephone calls.
- has a due date calculator
- searches for midwives by due date, locality, preferred place of birth (hospital, birthing centre or home)
- shows only midwives who hold a current Annual Practising Certificate, are members of the New Zealand College of Midwives and are currently practising
- provides up-to-date information - each midwife’s month-by-month availability is regularly updated
- provides written profiles of each midwife and contact details
- has a ‘print list’ option for women who don’t have a computer
The site includes information on New Zealand’s midwifery-led maternity care system and contact details for feedback and further information or if you would like to order promotional material.
We are sure that the service will be a great help to women.
If you have any queries or you would like some promotional material, please contact us by replying to this e-mail at email@example.com.
Thank you for your attention and your support.
New Zealand College of Midwives
Voluntary Bonding Scheme 2014
Health Workforce New Zealand (HWNZ) is seeking comment on the hard-to-staff communities and hard-to-staff specialties for the Voluntary Bonding Scheme (VBS). Your comment will inform recommendations made to the Minister of Health on the 2014 Terms and Conditions. Please provide feedback on the following hard-to-staff communities and hard-to-staff specialties by using the document below that is specific to your role and email it to Abigail_Milnes@moh.govt.nz by Friday 5 July 2013
Voluntary Bonding Scheme 2014 Letter (PDF, 312KB)
Voluntary Bonding Scheme 2014 Terms & Conditions - Doctors (Word, 20KB)
Voluntary Bonding Scheme 2014 Terms & Conditions - Midwives (Word, 20KB)
Voluntary Bonding Scheme 2014 Terms & Conditions - Nurses (Word, 20KB)
New Midwifery Staffing Advisory Group
The Miwifery Staffing Advisory Group National Forum Proceedingsy (PDF, 312 KB)
The Midwifery Staffing Advisory Group (MSAG) has been established as a national advisory group tasked with looking at midwifery and ancillary staffing in maternity units.
The MSAG is a collaborative activity involving DHBs, the New Zealand College of Midwives, the New Zealand Nurses Organisation and the Midwifery Employer Representation and Advisory Service.
The goal is to develop an agreed evidence based methodology for staffing and resourcing maternity units with a focus on the midwifery, RN and ancillary workforce. This work will fulfil the requirements of the NZ Maternity Standards, the Referral Guidelines and maternity services specifications.
As a key stakeholders in the provision of Maternity Services in NZ, NZNO members are invited to review and comment on the attached Terms of Reference for the Advisory Group and signal the level of involvement and communication that you would like to maintain.
Midwifery Staffing Advisory Group Terms of reference (docx)
Feedback: Please make your comments to Kate Weston, NZNO Professional Nursing Advisor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The coordinating body for this work is the Safe Staffing Healthy Workplaces Unit which is an entity that has been established by DHBs and health sector unions. The Advisory Group has already begun steps to undertake a DHB pilot to test a staffing methodology. The results of this pilot will be presented to the sector at a forum planned for May 2012. We will keep you informed of the details of the forum as they are developed and would warmly invite your participation in this event.
Vitamin D in Pregnancy and Infancy
The Ministry of Health has released advice on sun exposure for pregnant women and infants, together with identification of those high risk of vitamin D deficiency and recommondations for vitamin D supplementation.
For further information please click on the links below:
NZ College of Midwives
More information about midwifery
Grants for Midwifery Postgraduate Study
New MOH Publications
The Ministry of Health has released updated Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Healthy Pregnant and Breastfeeding Mothers which is available from:
Eating for Healthy Pregnant Women (HE1805) and Eating for Healthy Breastfeeding Women (GE1805) have also been updated and are available from the health education resource website:
The updated sections include 4.3.4 Mercury; Section 4.6.1 Pre-Conception Nutrition (related to fish intake an mercury) and Section 4.6.2 Effect of maternal nutrition on incidence of infant allergy.
The changes made are very specific and should not affect most healthy women. Recommendations regarding mercury relate to fish intake during and when planning a pregnancy and introduces three rather than two categories of fish. Consumption of 2nd category fish should be limited to 4 x 150g servings per week and fish in Category 3 (shark, marlin, swordfish and some trout) should only be consumed once a fortnight during pregnancy.
The recommendation on maternal diet and prevention of food allergies relates to consuming peanuts and states that avoiding peanuts and peanut products during pregnancy and breastfeeding is not necessary.
June 2012 - Advisory Group National Forum Report (312KB, PDF)
May 2012 (790KB, PDF)
September 2008 (74 KB, PDF)