The NZCOM is the professional organisation, and recognised ‘voice’, for midwives and student midwives in New Zealand, and represents over 2800 members. The website has sections for midwives, women and students. For midwives, it includes: Professional Practice, Consensus Statements, Standards of Practice and Guidelines, Continuing Education and Professional Development; Information about the Midwifery First Year of Practice programme, and Job Opportunities.
Nga Maia is the national organisation representing Maori birthing. The kaupapa of Nga Maia focuses on Mama, Pepi and Whanau and promoting Matauranga Maori in pregnancy and childbirth. Nga Maia members include Midwives, Students, Educators and Whanau. Nga Maia continually promotes its membership and encourages inter-generational participation by the involvement of kaumatua and tamariki at Nga Maia hui.
“ICM supports, represents and works to strengthen professional associations of midwives on a global basis. At present ICM has over 90 member associations in more than 70 countries. The ICM works with midwives and midwifery associations globally to secure women’s right and access to midwifery care before, during and after childbirth. We have worked alongside UN agencies and other partners for decades in global initiatives to help reduce the numbers of mothers and babies who die in and around childbirth, and evidence is growing that shows expanding midwifery care is one of the best ways to combat maternal mortality. The drive for safer motherhood continues to gain strength as more women worldwide achieve access to midwifery care. Please use the website to find out more about the ICM and its members; its work and projects; and many publications and documents that you may find helpful.”
The MCNZ is the regulatory body for New Zealand midwives. It is responsible for the protection of the health and safety of women and babies during the childbirth process by providing mechanisms to ensure that midwives are competent and fit to practise midwifery.
This is a government funded mentorship programme for new graduates. Visit the site to learn more about being mentored or becoming a mentor.
The MOH has several functions which include funding, monitoring and planning health policy. The website has a number of midwifery specific pages, the links to some of these are listed below.
MOH Health Education Resources (including Breech birth, Chlamydia, HIV screening info in several languages)
The NSU is a separate unit of the Ministry of Health. Their website includes a range of information and resources about national screening programmes in New Zealand. These include Antenatal HIV screening, Newborn Metabolic and hearing screening, and Down Syndrome screening quality improvement measures.
The NZGG is an independent, not-for-profit organisation, funded by the Ministry of Health, set up to promote effective delivery of health and disability services, based on evidence.
The HDC is an independent agency set up to: promote and protect the rights of consumers who use health and disability services; help resolve problems between consumers and providers of health and disability services; and improve the quality of health care and disability services.
The Perinatal and Maternal Mortality Review Committee (PMMRC) is an independent committee that advises the Minster of Health on how to reduce the number of deaths of babies and mothers in New Zealand.
New Zealand's pharmaceutical management agency. The link takes you to the page for health professionals.
Medsafe is the New Zealand medicines and medical devices safety authority. This site provides information on the regulation of medicines and medical devices in New Zealand and the safe use of medicines.
Click here to go to the prescriber update article on Drug Safety in Lactation.
The Cochrane Library contains high-quality, independent evidence to inform healthcare decision-making. It includes reliable evidence from Cochrane and other systematic reviews, clinical trials, and more. Cochrane reviews bring you the combined results of the world’s best medical research studies, and are recognised as the gold standard in evidence-based health care. There are ‘plain English’ summaries of each of the reviews included. You can access it all free. When you find a review you will see the abstract. You have the option of reading, and downloading, the abstract, a summary, or the full review, by clicking the option you want in the box on the left of thescren under 'PDF'.
Click The Cochrane Library to visit the website in a two step process, via the Ministry of Health website, as they are funding our free access (and the direct link keeps breaking!).
If you have not used the Cochrane Library before, check out the “Help! New Users Start Here” section on the right of the page which the link opens.
This is a UK site funded by the National Health Service, on a website called "Choices, your health your choices". It is intended to provide health professionals and the public with a service which explains the facts behind the headlines presented in the media related to health issues and give a better understanding of the science that makes the news. It publishes reviews of the actual research which is headlined in the popular media, and often misreported or sensationalised, and reports on what the research actually looked into and found, critiques it and considers how it fits with other research in the area. It is British based, but often health research related headlines from the UK are published in New Zealand.
"Each day the NHS Choices team selects health stories that are making headlines. These, along with the scientific articles behind the stories, are sent to Bazian, a leading provider of evidence-based healthcare information. Bazian's clinicians and scientists analyse the research and produce impartial evidence-based assessments, which are edited and published by NHS Choices."
Click here to go directly to the 'Pregnancy/child' page.
NICE is an independent organisation responsible for providing national guidance on promoting good health and preventing and treating ill health in the UK. NICE produces guidance in three areas of health: public health, health technologies and clinical practice. The NICE guidelines for antenatal care may be the most well known, but they also have published guidelines for other areas related to preganancy and birth. This link takes you to the page which lists, and links you to, all of the guidelines related to gynaecology, pregnancy and birth. You can download articles for free.
The HTA programme produces independent research about the effectiveness of different healthcare treatments and tests for those who use, manage and provide care in the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK. It identifies the most important questions that the NHS needs the answers to, by consulting widely with a range of groups, and commissions the research it thinks is most important through different funding routes. The HTA programme is a programme of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) in the UK. This is a site for those interested in reading original research. It is free to download the published research, and the research is generally comprehensive. It includes a wide range of subjects, not just pregnancy and birth. This link takes you to the advanced search page, from where you can select a topic. It may take a little perseverance to master this site.
Care in normal birth: A practical guide (1997). Report of a technical working group. Available free to download.
Managing complications in pregnancy and childbirth (a guide for midwives and doctors - 2003)
'Birth' is a well known Journal which often publishes reviews of research and comprehensive articles. Some article are available free to read and download, by selecting the 'pdf' option, rather than the 'abstract' option below the title.
Midwifery Today is a well known Midwifery Journal. You can subscribe to a free email newsletter which gives you small snippets of what's in the journal. Some articles in each journal are free to access via the website.
“We are midwives, student midwives and others in the UK committed to improving the maternity care provided by the NHS. We strongly believe that all women have the right to a service tailored more closely to their needs, and a sympathetic attitude on the part of their professional attendants. We are primarily a support group for people having difficulty in getting or giving good, sympathetic, personalised midwifery care. A few of us are working independently outside the NHS, in order to offer a more woman-centred, one-to-one, style of practice, which at present is not widely available within NHS maternity services.” A selection of articles from ARM’s quarterly journal “Midwifery Matters” are available free to download here:
The GFMER website provides lists of medical and health journals which are free to access, with most allowing free downloading of all material. This link takes you to the list of free medical journals, by subject. They have ‘obstetrics, gynecology, reproductive health’, and ‘women’s health’ sections, which link you to lists of relevant journals.
The BMJ is a well known peer reviewed general medical journal which is published weekly. Some of the content is available free, in particular, the research articles in each edition. You can subscribe for free to a regular email alerting you to articles.
‘O&G Magazine’ (NB This is not their Journal – ANZJOG). Articles are free to download.
The RANZCOG website also has publications under the heading ‘Women’s Health’ and their “College Statements’ are available free to download. Click on the relevant tag under the ‘publications’ tag on the left of the page.
The PSNZ website includes their Guidelines, Position Statements and Submissions and Publications.
”PubMed is a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine that includes over 18 million citations from MEDLINE and other life science journals for biomedical articles back to 1948. PubMed includes links to full text articles and other related resources.” A few articles are available free to download, some abstracts are free, but most articles require subscription to the journal, or a medical or Polytechnic library.
”BioMed Central is an STM (Science, Technology and Medicine) publisher which has pioneered the open access publishing model. All original research articles published by BioMed Central are made freely and permanently accessible online immediately upon publication.” This link takes you to the BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth publication. You can also click on the tag across the top of the page to choose ‘subject areas’ and access other publications under ‘medical research methodology’, ‘pregnancy and childbirth’ and ‘women’s health’, or conduct your own ‘advanced search’. All articles are peer reviewed, and free to download.
Medscape is an American Medical website. It publishes summary articles of recently published research. You can register for free and receive regular emails with recent publications on pregnancy/birth issues (select ‘ob/gyn & women’s health’ option). You can also select to receive only systematic reviews, rather than every article. Some of the research reported is not very robust, and it only reports a very small number of the vast amount of research published on the topic every week, but can be an interesting read. It does give you free access to some research articles and reviews, in the section titled ‘Resource Centers’. There is one on pregnancy, which encompasses pregnancy, birth and postpartum.
This website is imbedded in the NZCOM website and is still under development, but will become a source of research by and for New Zealanders.
Women's Health Action is a charitable trust which aims to provide women with high quality information and education services to enable them to maintain their health and make informed choices about their health care in New Zealand. They have a health promotion and disease prevention focus, with special interests in breastfeeding and screening. The site includes articles, resources for pregnant women and midwives, which include pamphlets on ultrasound in pregnancy, vitamin K and caesarean section.
“Our mission is to help mothers to breastfeed through mother-to-mother support, education, information, and encouragement and to promote a better understanding of breastfeeding as an important element in the healthy development of the baby and mother.” This website has articles and information (free to download), contacts for LLL groups throughout New Zealand, books and leaflets as well as information about the international organisation itself.
This website includes information and free to download research on Waterbirth.
Home Birth Aotearoa is the national organisation representing the many local associations throughout Aotearoa / New Zealand. Home Birth Aotearoa supports and celebrates home birth and provides birthing women and whanau with information about the home birth option.
”Parents Centres NZ Inc has 51 Centres across the country and provides one of the largest parenting networks and associated infrastructure to support parents and their children aged 0-6. Parents Centres NZ Inc is the primary provider of Antenatal Education and childbirth support in New Zealand, with 120 plus diploma and certified Childbirth Educators.”
"Parent to Parent is a support and information network for parents of children with special needs. Support is provided voluntarily by Trained Support Parents who have a child with the same or similar needs. Formed in New Zealand in 1983, the group has built up a support network that is now nationwide. We are affiliated to similar groups around the world and maintain close links with other organisations and professionals who work in related fields. Our services are free to families." They have a long list of links to organisations supporting those with a wide range of special needs - see the tag "Other Links" on the left hand side of the page.
”Welcome to Sands New Zealand (Stillbirth and Newborn Death Support). We are a voluntary, parent-run, non-profit organisation set up to support parents and families who have experienced the death of a baby.” The Sands website has free downloadable resources for those who have experienced a stillbirth or newborn death.
”The MMPO was established by the New Zealand College of Midwives in 1997 to assist caseloading (Lead Maternity Carer) midwives by providing an efficient ‘midwifery friendly’ practice management service. We provide a business start up and advisory service as well as an integrated Maternity Practice Management System (MPMS). Products and Services offered to midwives and LMCs include: maternity notes, electronic MPMS, same day claiming from HealthPAC, disbursement of payments to others as requested (locums and back-up) etc.”
MERAS has been established as a dedicated and focused union for employed midwives with support from the New Zealand College of Midwives. A national District Health Board (DHB) midwifery collective employment agreement for employed midwives has been negotiated and is now in operation for MERAS members at DHBs.