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For Immediate Release:
May 3, 2012

Celebrating International Day of the Midwife May 5        

(LONDON, Ontario) – On May 5, midwives around the world will be celebrating International Day of the Midwife. At London Health Sciences Centre, 29 midwives have practice privileges for women who prefer or require a hospital birth. In fact, 10 years ago LHSC was the first hospital in the province with a midwifery department.


“While we’ve seen an increase in the number of home births over the past few years, about six to seven per cent of births at the hospital include a midwife,” says Kathi Wilson, Chief of Midwifery.


The success of midwifery care in London has created strong demand for the service and Wilson says expectant mothers should contact one of the three practices in the area --Thames Valley Midwives, Womancare Midwives and Talbot Creek Midwives -- as soon as they know they are pregnant.


“Our midwives provide complete care for the expecting mother, from early pregnancy to six weeks after birth,” says Wilson. “This includes being available on call by phone 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We really get to know our babies and families well.”


Midwives are experts in normal pregnancy, birth and newborn care. The profession of midwifery in the province is self-regulated and governed by the College of Midwives of Ontario.


“Working with midwives to provide an exceptional experience for expectant mothers is key to our vision of care here at London Health Sciences Centre,” says Bonnie Adamson, President and CEO. “It speaks to the benefits we can create for patients through strong partnerships between hospital and community care givers.”


Midwives are required to complete a four-year university degree through the Ontario Midwifery Education Program. If a midwife has been trained outside of Canada, she completes the International Midwifery Pre-Registration Program. Once a midwife has completed training, she is licensed through the College of Midwives of Ontario.


Ontario midwives are funded by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care so services are free to clients.


Kathi Wilson is available to speak to the media Friday, May 4


If you would like to set up an interview time, please contact Kathy Leblanc at 519-685-8500 ext. 74772.

About London Health Sciences Centre
London Health Sciences Centre has been in the forefront of medicine in Canada for 137 years and offers the broadest range of specialized clinical services in Ontario. Building on the traditions of its founding hospitals to provide compassionate care in an academic teaching setting, London Health Sciences Centre is home to Children’s Hospital, South Street Hospital, University Hospital, Victoria Hospital, two family medical centres, and two research institutes – Children’s Health Research Institute and Lawson Health Research Institute, a joint research initiative with St. Joseph’s Health Care, London. As a leader in medical discovery and health research, London Health Sciences Centre has a history of over 50 international and national firsts and attracts top clinicians and researchers from around the world. As a regional referral centre, London Health Sciences Centre cares for the most medically complex patients including critically injured adults and children in Southwestern Ontario and beyond. The hospital’s nearly 15,000 staff, physicians, students and volunteers provide care for more than one million patient visits a year. For more information visit www.lhsc.on.ca


For media inquiries contact:

Kathy Leblanc

Corporate Communications and Public Relations
London Health Sciences Centre
(519) 685-8500 ext. 74772