My path to midwifery started in 1998 when I entered a 3 year midwifery program in Berlin, Germany, at a high volume women’s hospital. After my training I worked as an employed midwife in two large, high-risk maternity wards in Berlin, with up to 3500 births a year. When not working in the hospitals, I did post partum support in women’s homes.
A few years later I followed my Canadian husband to BC where I completed the ‘PLEA’ registration process (bridging program for foreign trained midwives) and became registered in BC in 2007. This is when I met my friend and colleague Jeanette Kleger who I have the pleasure of finally working with again here in Vernon!
I have worked in a variety of places and models in BC: in Duncan, Revelstoke and Vernon. I opened Revelstoke's first midwifery clinic in 2009, Mountain Midwifery Revelstoke, and was a solo practitioner there for 8 years.
Our two children, Nika and Oscar, were born during that time.
In 2016 our family moved to Vernon, partly for the French Immersion school, partly because I needed a change from solo midwifery care. I have now worked in two shared care arrangements and solo again for the last year. I am ready to share the on-call time with other midwives again and spend more off-call time with my children!
One of my special interests and strengths is my breastfeeding support. As a new mother I struggled for the first month with breastfeeding, which made me aware of how hard it can be, and how alone a new mother can feel, without good, professional support. I have just started my training to become an IBCLC, international Board Certified Lactation Consultant.
I am also becoming certified as an NRP instructor (Neonatal Resuscitation Program) by the Canadian Paediatric Society.
To balance out my midwife life, I go kick boxing and love canoeing and skiing.
When I find time, I play the Tenor Saxophone.
I am also a volunteer with ‘The Safe Motherhood Project’. With a very small group of healthcare providers I travel to Guatemala annually to train traditional birth attendants (midwives with no formal training) in birthing skills, risk assessment and emergency skills, in rural areas. This is really an important part of my life as I had studied Spanish (and English) in Germany to become a teacher, before my life brought me to midwifery. It makes me so happy to help my colleagues in Guatemala!
In 1998 Midwifery was fully integrated into the BC Medical System. Since then pregnant women get to choose whether to receive care from a family doctor OR a registered midwife. No referral needed and with no additional cost as Midwifery is covered by your MSP/ BC Health Care Card.
As primary care providers to pregnant families in BC, your midwife can order any lab, screening and diagnostic tests - including blood work and ultrasounds. Midwives can also prescribe medications when necessary.
Midwives work collaboratively with other health care providers including your family doctor for issues not related to pregnancy and with other specialists such as obstetrician and paediatricians if you develop any complications.
BC Midwifery is an autonomous profession regulated for your safety by the BC College of Nurses and Midwives (BCCNM)
Midwifery Care in BC is about choice. Women want the opportunity to be supported in experiencing the normal physiological process of birth under the guidance of someone they trust won’t interfere. They want protection of someone trained to recognize when intervention becomes necessary. At the heart of midwifery care is the respect and support provided to each client so that they may give birth safely, with power and dignity.
The research is clear - families who choose midwifery led care are less likely to have interventions and are more satisfied with their birth experiences.
At this time, BC has the highest number of births assisted by midwives across Canada.
Midwives recognize birth as a normal physiologic process with a profound impact on all aspects of a parent’s life. We know you are trusting us with one of the most important events of your life and therefore we provide a client-centred model of care assessing physical, social and emotional needs.
Midwives recognize their clients as the primary decision makers. We educate, support and advise providing evidence-based information to allow you to make informed choices about all aspects of your care - including tests, procedures and even choice of birth place.
Midwives recognize the importance of building relationship and continuity of care. Relationships are built through longer appointment times and only meeting a small number of midwives, who are committed to being present for you throughout your birthing year.
There is always a midwife directly available to the clients at all times to address urgent concerns.