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  • Angry regional midwives rally for better resources

    Author: AAP

Queensland's health minister will meet with representatives of the state's midwives this week as they march on parliament to highlight unsafe conditions.

Regional midwives frustrated with the Palaszczuk government's budget failure to commit to their profession were bussed in for the Parliament House rally on Monday.

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The government provided $42 million in maternity funding in the budget but made no allocation for midwives and midwife-led models of care, the Queensland Nurses and Midwives Union said.

Angry midwives warned that staff were severely overloaded, resulting in unsafe conditions for both mothers and babies, calling for immediate action from Health Minister Shannon Fentiman.

Ms Fentiman has acknowledged the pressures and will meet midwife representatives on Wednesday.


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"There's a range of things that our midwives would like to see happen. I'm absolutely committed to working with them," she told reporters on Monday.

"They're out there today to make their case, and good on them. I look forward to sitting down with them ... and making some more announcements in this space."

Calls to expand nurse-to-patient ratios, install a chief midwife representative, and more federal support for a count the babies campaign will form part of the meeting.

A recent safety audit revealed single midwives were allocated up to 20 mothers and babies at a time

"The system is in crisis and we have the solutions - Queensland's midwives must be heard and respected," QNMU secretary Kate Veach said.

"We are calling on Health Minister Shannon Fentiman and the state government to commit appropriate funding to midwives and midwife-led models of care now."

Australian College of Midwives chief Alison Weatherstone said action was required on behalf of Queensland mothers and babies, as well as their colleagues.

"Queensland women aren't currently able to consistently access maternity care close to home - they deserve choice, continuity of care and services where they live," she said.

"Failure to act is a failure to ensure the safety and wellbeing of Queensland mothers, babies and the midwives who care for them."


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