Pitter patter of first steps towards midwifery

BUNDABERG'S Amy Freeman was recently among 40 nurses from throughout Queensland who converged on a CQUniversity Noosa Campus residential school for their first steps towards becoming midwives.

Queensland Health has invested extra clinical placements and funding to enable around 20 additional nurses to enrol in the Graduate Diploma of Midwifery.

Participants benefiting from Queensland Health support travelled from locations including Cairns, Innisfail, Mackay, Proserpine, Bundaberg, Rockhampton, Nambour and Beaudesert.

"This unique and innovative model of education and preparation involving residential schools, distance and flexible education, and clinical placements will enhance midwifery workforce capacity in rural and remote areas of Queensland," said Associate Professor Moira Williamson, CQUniversity's Head of Program - Midwifery.

Assoc Prof Williamson said CQUniversity's program approval by the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Accreditation Council (ANMAC), its distance and flexible education capabilities and its network of regional campuses made it a perfect supplier of this innovative new program.

"Our Graduate Diploma of Midwifery embeds 'continuity of care' and a woman-centred model, recognising women's preference for greater choice in birthing options.

"CQUniversity's distance and flexible education strength allows the placement of midwifery students for clinical education in a diverse range of midwifery practice settings, provided clinical requirements are met, enhancing their continuity of care experiences."

Queensland Chief Nurse Dr Frances Hughes said the program is significant in working towards meeting the needs of the maternity workforce and rural and remote services.

"It shows we have the ability to do things differently; we just need to combine leadership and strategy," she said.

"This is an example of many of the new ways NMOQ (the Nursing and Midwifery Office of Queensland) can partner and work to align education and services to deliver better and more accessible services to Queenslanders."

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