Client feedback Oct 2022
“Having had a challenging experience with my first birth, I decided to meet Victoria and Nadia when I found out I was pregnant with my second child. I booked the midwife + doula package and it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Having these incredibly experienced, knowledgeable, thoughtful, and empowering women by my side throughout pregnancy, labour and for two weeks postpartum allowed me to work through my fears, be better informed and have a truly positive birth. I wish every mother-to-be could have Victoria and Nadia!”
We thought it would be helpful to talk about how Nadia and I work together as a Doula & Independent midwife partnership. Our roles are clearly different with one being clinical and one non-clinical, however we work very closely and collaboratively with each of our clients with a shared passion for physiological birth, birth autonomy and choices.
We will discuss each other’s roles and how we feel they complement each other but here’s some information you might find interesting.
Did you know a UK study compared births supported by an NHS midwife versus Independent midwives and found that :
Only 0.4% of NHS midwife supported births were homebirths compared to 66% of births assisted by Independent!
Spontaneous onset of labour was also more common in the IM group at 96.6%.
Mothers in the IM cohort were also much more likely to breast feed 88.0%.
Did you also know that a 2017 Cochrane Review, which compiled studies involving over 15,000 participants, found that those supported by a doula during birth were:
More likely to have a spontaneous vaginal birth
Less likely to have a caesarean section
Likely to have a shorter labour
Potentially at lower risk of postpartum depression
More likely to report a positive birth experience
And their babies were likely to show better signs of health during newborn Apgar score checks*
The role of Independent Midwife Nadia written by Doula Victoria.
Independent midwife Nadia works autonomously but takes a collaborative approach with the NHS as all her clients remain entitled to access any or all of their maternity care available if needed. Nadia is up to date with the Nursing & Midwifery Council (NMC) code of conduct and follows best practise, safe and evidence-based care. She is also fully insured with the Zest providers. Nadia provides a true continuity of carer experience. Depending on the package booked with Nadia, the families she works with receive all of their antenatal care, birth support and postnatal care from the same midwife.
Nadia is highly professional, warm, genuine, honest and deeply passionate about her practise. She offers unbiased, personalised information and clinical support. Nadia has a confident, considered and highly experienced approach, with 12 years working within the NHS but mostly autonomously as a private midwife. She understands how the NHS system works and thrives on empowering new parents to do their research, listen to their intuition and offers her time and dedication to listening so parents can make choices that are best placed for them.
With regular meet ups antenatally, Nadia creates the space for clients to ask all sorts of questions and address any concerns or worries from the comfort of their own home. As a package or partnership with a doula, we take turns to meet with our client and partners, myself offering a minimum of 4 2 hour sessions together, 2 of which with Nadia as well. When we meet together, we offer joint conversation on a topic of choice, we will often discuss the things like, the myth of the due date, phases of labour, comfort measures, biomechanics of birth and positions using gravity. As we host our full Antenatal, hypnobirthing course together, we can really get involved with all birthy topics. We spend some time discussing any fears or concerns and it’s a wonderful moment when Nadia has a listen in of the baby, checks measurements and goes through any notes or appointments that may been attended within the NHS. Nadia loves practising with her wooden pinard to listen to the baby and thrives feeling the energy of the baby in utero and discussing together with the parent what their baby might be like as a human on the outside. Giving her time and presence in this Antenatal period, really allows the parents to grow in confidence, trust and connection to their pregnancy and baby, which is at the absolute core to building a positive attitude towards their birth and parenthood.
In a birth setting, Nadia provides a close but hands off approach, guided by the client, always available and watching closely but equally at a distance to allow the birthing woman/person space to listen to her own body, movements and positions. Nadia listens intently to the sounds & movements of the woman and checks the baby intermittently. Together as a birth team, we support with encouraging words and a calm, trusting presence in the birth space as she remains in her rhythm and reinforces her confidence through labour.
Nadia will remain with the new family until breastfeeding is initiated and return over a period of days agreed, always looking holistically at the mother, baby dyad and how both are doing from a clinical perspective. We visit on alternate days with my main role to talk through the birth together and discuss the early days of parenthood and the transition from womb to world for both parents and baby.
As a midwife and doula partnership, we are a team that knows,cares and supports each other, understanding each others roles and respecting each others presence in the birth space which equals a calm, connected, positive and trusting union for the birthing family.
The role of a doula written by Independent Midwife Nadia.
A doula is a trained lie person offering their presence support and guidance through pregnancy and birth. Although not medically trained Doulas have been around since ancient
times helping women to give birth at home. Whilst women often had a midwife present
during childbirth, they would also have female family members and friends to provide
emotional and physical support and guidance to the birthing person helping them feel
grounded and less afraid. Holding a safe protective space for them with positive
encouragement and gentle reassurance.
This special birthing support also benefited the midwife since the women helped ensure the
mother was comfortable. They could also lend assistance to take care of other basic needs
like getting blankets and hot water.
Victoria is a very caring and highly emotionally intuitive birth practitioner. She is able to
gently feel her way through womens emotions, fears and needs during their pregnancy
preparing the ground work for their birth. She puts all of her energy and attention into the
person/family she is working with to work out exactly what their needs are and how she can
provide them with all the tools to feel safe, nurtured and held.
Regardless of how they birth, where they birth or how they feed their baby; they feel loved,
heard and empowered. All of their decisions are their own and Victoria helps ease them
through this delicate process in a way that helps them identify the path that feels most right
never making decisions based on fear or judgment.
Working together has transformed us from juggling trying to be everything for women; into
an effortless, energising project we work on together tailoring it to everyone’s individual
needs and utilising our individual skills.
Discussing and defining clear roles with each other as well as our boundaries and what we
feel confident/comfortable doing makes for seamless teamwork and helps us both focus
wholly on our tasks and responsibilities at hand.
For Victoria as a doula, she doesn’t need to focus on acting as advocate and negotiating how
to protect the space and wishes of the person she is working with. She can give all her
attention to the clients emotional and physical needs as we already have a clear
understanding and trust with each other. She can be fully present.
We know we are on the same page, and both have the same aim. We know that we are all
respected and together in the space. A unit all working together in harmony, both fully insured with Zest providers allowing Victoria to act as a second, non medical attendant at births as well.
The most powerful thing about the midwife doula team is that it removes any adrenaline or
fear from the space. We know each other, we all feel supported by each other. We do not
need to try and assess and figure out how to navigate the different people in the room. We
know exactly what ius going on and what is required of us. Oxytocin can flow freely allowing us all to think and feel at our clearest.