A belated birthday party didn’t reduce the enthusiasm and joy of Bundaberg mothers and babies as they caught up with their midwives at Alexandra Park.
The Bundaberg Midwifery Group Practice has now celebrated its first birthday, with midwives, mothers and babies getting together to share their experiences, celebrate and eat some delicious birthday cake.
Since opening on 12 May 2019, 196 mums have gone through their pregnancy journey with the Bundaberg MGP.
Among the mothers at the event was Danielle McCullough, who brought along her six-month old Samuel, who described her enthusiasm to join the program.
“I knew one of the midwives in the program and I was hopeful that she was someone who could deliver my baby and help me during my pregnancy,” Danielle said.
“It just sounded great to have that continuity of care and somebody you could trust and rely on during the pregnancy.”
Danielle’s antenatal visits were held at the MGP clinic at the Margaret Rose Centre, which she found much more relaxed and easier than attending the hospital, and she later had home postnatal visits due to COVID-19 arrangements.
“It was great, I would definitely recommend it, as it was something that felt comfortable and it felt like you didn’t have to worry as you had someone you can trust and rely on, if they can’t answer they will find someone to refer you onto,” Danielle said.
For Katie-Jo Hargreaves, who gave birth to son Jaite 10 weeks ago, her MGP experience coincided with COVID-19, which meant her antenatal and postnatal visits were conducted at home.
“MGP was something that I’d never heard of before and, when I did find out about what it was, I really liked the idea of it,” Katie-Jo said.
“It was good not having to come into town and having Amy (the midwife) come out to our house to sit down with us to go through everything at our own pace.
“Building that relationship with our midwife made it a really enjoyable experience. It was a lot more relaxed – because you were able to feel comfortable in your own environment –and it was nice to know she was going to turn up and you were going to talk about whatever you need to talk about.
“I already have recommended it to any friends who are pregnant or trying, next time I will definitely do the same thing.”
Both mums said they felt well supported throughout the pregnancy with testing and other expertise available to them at the Margaret Rose Centre or at their own home.
Bundaberg MGP midwife Amy Plowman said it was wonderful to celebrate the milestone of one year of the clinic, even if it was a belated due to COVID-19.
“It is the most rewarding experience to see our mums and babies who have been born within the program since its beginning,” Amy said.
“The bond of trust and genuine support that we create over the months of antenatal care, moment of birth and beyond is very special to reflect upon.”
While catching up with the mums and bubs was a great aspect of the day, it was also an opportunity for the MGP team to reflect on the achievement of implementing a continuity of care model within public maternity services in Bundaberg and its future.
“Having been successfully established and becoming recognised in the community as a women-centred approach to pregnancy and birth care, MGP has seen an expansion of the practice to facilitate its provision to more women in the community,” Amy said.
“The model was previously only available to ‘low-risk’ women, but now aims to facilitate care for all women who wish to have a vaginal birth.”
Any mums-to-be who are interested in the Bundaberg Midwifery Group Practice should ask their GP for a referral.
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