By Lethbridge Herald on December 10, 2020.
Local and area families receiving care from a newly recruited registered midwife now have the option to deliver their babies at Taber Health Centre.
Planning is underway to recruit two additional registered midwives, giving more families supported by midwifery services the option of a planned birth location either close to home, at home, or at the health centre.
“We know families in the community have been asking about midwifery services in the Taber area,” says Tyler Shandro, Minister of Health, in a news release.
“The Government of Alberta and AHS are taking steps to improve access to these services in the area and across the province. This is great news for expecting families because it means more options for their care that are closer to home.”
“What exciting news for moms and families in and around Taber,” adds Grant Hunter, MLA for Taber-Warner. “I’m so pleased government and the strong health system can offer options for growing families across southern Alberta.
“As a father, grandfather and elected representative, I’m happy we can listen, collaborate and work together to ensure residents and families in this region are well served.”
There are eight registered midwives serving in AHS South Zone; the others are based in Medicine Hat, Brooks and Lethbridge.
“We recognize how important it is to families that they can continue to feel supported by their midwife throughout their journey,” says AHS president and CEO Dr. Verna Yiu.
“AHS has been working hard to increase the number of midwives working with AHS in South Zone and across the province, particularly in Indigenous, underserved and rural areas.”
Registered midwives provide a full spectrum of maternal and newborn care, from prenatal to labour and delivery, until six weeks postpartum. There are 154 other registered midwives providing services through staff appointments with AHS across the province. About 3,500 Albertan families used midwifery services over the past year, an increase of approximately 50 per cent since 2014-15. Physicians, care teams and registered midwives work together at sites to ensure families feel safe and supported throughout their delivery.
“On behalf of Taber physicians, I am pleased to announce our collaboration with new midwifery colleagues in the provision of excellent, rural maternity and newborn care at the Taber Health Centre,” says community medical director Dr. Andrea Hargrove.