Mums and tots gather in Newport to support 'stork relay'
3:40pm Wednesday 28th August 2013 in Gwent news
THE mothers of babies that a Gwent midwife helped to deliver gathered in the city last week to back a campaign to raise £72,000 for independent midwives.
Independent midwife Annie Robertson, 53, was taking part in one of four relays being held across Britain by Independent Midwives UK, which ended at Downing Street on Monday where a plastic baby was delivered along with a letter to David Cameron.
The “stork relay” stopped off in Newport on its way to Downing Street.
Ms Robertson, who has 33 years of experience as a midwife, was joined by a selection of mothers and children she had ‘caught’ over the years, before Ms Robertson took the plastic baby to Ross-on-Wye to complete her part of the relay.
Ms Robertson is the only independent midwife in Gwent and has delivered countless babies over the county.
Previously working for the NHS, she has been an independent midwife for 22 years, but now due to an EU directive introduced in 2007, all independent midwives must be insured.
“I’m scared what might happen if we can’t get insurance,” she said.
“If we go, choice will go. It’s saving a choice for women who don’t feel the system is there for them.”
With high insurance premiums, birth choice for women who don’t feel safe using the traditional system is restricted, according to Independent Midwives UK.
Independent midwives are qualified midwives who, like their NHS colleagues, are registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council.
The former Independent Midwives Association become Independent Midwives UK in 2007 and continues to pursue commercial insurance so independent midwives can continue to work outside the NHS.
The organisation is committed to improving maternity provision for all women in the UK and is working with other groups, including the UK Government, to achieve that.
Independent Midwives UK also provides professional advice and support for independent midwives.
After meetings with the Department of Health, it has been agreed midwives can insure themselves through a different type of insurance.
The midwives have until the end of October to raise a group sum of £72,000 to kick start the insurance costs.
This money will be raised through a combination of fundraising, donations and personal contributions from the midwives.
In 2007 Mr Cameron said that in times of NHS closures it would be “foolish to force independent midwives to cease practising” and so these midwives say they are are making sure he sticks to his word.
“We’re trying to keep the government on their toes,” said Ms Robertson.
Comments are closed on this article.