Frequently asked questions

What is midwifery in Ontario all about?


Midwifery care in Ontario is based on three principles: informed choice, choice of birthplace,
and continuity of care.

1. Informed choice means that you are an active decision-maker in your health care. Your
midwife will discuss all healthcare with you and give you information to make informed
decisions.
2. Choice of birthplace means that you get to choose where you want to have your baby.
Midwives are able to provide care during labour and birth in the hospital or home setting.
3. Continuity of care means that midwives spend time with clients and develop relationships.
Midwives provide complete care throughout pregnancy, labour, birth, and the first six weeks following birth. This basket of services -- referred to as a "course of care"-- provides continuity, optimizing your safety and comfort.




Is midwifery care free in Ontario?


Yes! Midwives are funded through the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. For clients who have OHIP, there is absolutely no cost to having a midwife. For clients who do not have OHIP, and are a peranent resident of Ontario they can access midwifery services for free as well. You also don't need a referral. You can fill in our intake form online or call and request midwifery care yourself, once you have a positive pregnancy test.




How do I apply for midwifery care and The Expecting & Connecting program?


You can self-refer by filling out the application on our website. You do not need a referral from a doctor to have a midwife. You can contact us directly. Please use our intake form on our website. If you have questions please call our office at 519-252-4700.




Can I have my baby in the hospital?


Yes! One of the most important decisions that parents must make is the location of birth. The midwives at Midwifery Collective of Essex County have hospital privileges at both Windsor Regional Hospital and Erie Shores Health Care. This means that the midwives can provide your care within a hospital setting. If your pregnancy is low risk, you may choose to have your baby either at home or in the hospital, and we will provide full midwifery care in either setting. Learn more about choice of birthplace here.




​ How are midwives trained?


Midwives qualify for registration by graduating from the Ontario Midwifery Education Program, a four year university degree program. Foreign-trained midwives complete the International Midwifery Pre-registration Program at Ryerson University.




What is the difference between a midwife and an obstetrician?


Midwives and obstetricians are both primary care providers that provide medical care. Obstetricians are medical doctors who have an expertise in high-risk pregnancies, while midwives are experts in low-risk pregnancies. You can choose to have a midwife OR an obstetrician for your pregnancy and birth. The Expecting & Connecting program offers midwifery led postpartum care to women who have chosen an obstretician for their pregnancy and birth.




​ How are doulas different from midwives?


A doula is a trained labour support person who provides emotional and physical support to those giving birth and their families. Doulas are not medical professionals. Doula services are not covered by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, however some extended health benefits programmes may provide coverage.

Learn more about doulas at https://www.dona.org/. Midwives provide the health care that you and your baby need. Midwives monitor your labour, deliver the baby and make sure that you and your baby are safe and healthy during the birthing process. Learn more about how midwives are trained and regulated at https://www.ontariomidwives.ca/regulation-education




What if I want or need pain medication?  Can I get an epidural if I have a midwife?


Midwifery clients can access all pain medication options at our local hospitals. These include nitrous oxide or "laughing gas", narcotics such as Nubain, and epidurals. If you need or want an epidural, midwives will consult with a physician for you to have an epidural for pain relief in labour. Many of our clients choose this option. You can only have an epidural in the hospital.




What if I need a caesarean section?


Sometimes a c-section is the safest way for babies to be born. When that happens, either planned or unplanned, your midwives will continue to provide care to you and your baby in collaboration with the physicians, nurses, and respiratory therapists.




Can I have a water birth?


If you give birth at home, you may choose to give birth in water. At the hospital, hydrotherapy and pain relief are available , however we do not offer water births at our local hospitals. Learn more about water birth from this excellent new resource created by The Association of Ontario Midwives: https://www.ontariomidwives.ca/water-birth




Can I also see an obstetrician if I’m in midwifery care?


Yes , Our Expecting and Connecting Program is a free program that provides midwifery -led prenatal and post partum care to families who have obstetrician. This includes postpartum home visits by midwife who also is a lactation consultant.

Referral form can be found here.




Have more questions?


Call us at 519-252-4700 to book an information session with one of our midwives, or fill out our intake form, to see if midwifery care is right for you.





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