How should I resolve issues with my midwife?

First of all, we suggest talking to your midwife - most problems are simple matters of misunderstanding or differing expectations.

If you decide your midwife is not the one for you, you have the right to change your midwife at any time in your pregnancy or afterwards. Please let the midwife know as soon as you can that you have found another midwife.

It's important to provide feedback for your midwife as it forms the basis for our Midwifery Standards Reviews. You can download feedback forms or provide on line feedback here;


If you have unresolved concerns with a midwife, you can make confidential enquiries or seek advice by contacting the Midwifery Resolutions Committee in your area;

quality@nzcom.org.nz or phone 03 377 2732.

Midwifery Scope of Practice

The midwife works in partnership with women, on her own professional 
responsibility, to give women the necessary support, care and advice during 
pregnancy, labour and the postpartum period up to six weeks, to facilitate 
births and to provide care for the newborn.

The midwife understands, promotes and facilitates the physiological 
processes of pregnancy and childbirth, identifies complications that may arise 
in mother and baby, accesses appropriate medical assistance, and implements 
emergency measures as necessary. When women require referral midwives provide midwifery care in collaboration with other health professionals. 

Midwives have an important role in health and wellness promotion and 
education for the woman, her family and the community. Midwifery practice 
involves informing and preparing the woman and her family for pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding and parenthood and includes certain aspects of women's health, family planning and infant well-being. 

The midwife may practise in any setting, including the home, the 
community, hospitals, or in any other maternity service. In all settings, the 
midwife remains responsible and accountable for the care she provides.

Midwifery Standards of Practice

Standard one: The midwife works in partnership with the woman

Standard two: The midwife upholds each woman's right to free and informed choice

Standard three: The midwife collates and documents comprehensive

assessments of the woman and/or baby's health and wellbeing

Standard four: The midwife maintains purposeful, on-going, updated records and makes them available to the woman and other relevant persons

Standard five: Midwifery care is planned with the woman

Standard six: Midwifery actions are prioritised and implemented appropriately with no midwifery action or omission placing the woman at risk

Standard seven: The midwife is accountable to the woman, to herself, to the midwifery profession and to the wider community for her practice

Standard eight: The midwife evaluates her practice

Standard nine: The midwife negotiates the completion of the midwifery partnership with the woman

Standard ten: The midwife develops and shares midwifery knowledge and initiates and promotes research.

Turanga Kaupapa


Turanga Kaupapa are guidelines for cultural competence developed by Nga Maia o Aotearoa and formally adopted by both the Midwifery Council of New Zealand and the New Zealand College of Midwives.

Whakapapa: The wahine and her whanau is acknowledged

Karakia: The wahine and her whanau may use karakia

Whanaungatanga: The wahine and her whanau may involve others in her birthing programme

Te Reo Maori: The wahine and her whanau may speak Te Reo Maori

Mana: The dignity of the wahine, her whanau, the midwife and others involved is maintained

Hau Ora: The physical, spiritual, emotional and mental wellbeing of the wahine and her whanau is promoted and maintained

Tikanga Whenua: Maintains the continuous relationship to land, life and nourishment; and the knowledge and support of kaumatua and whanau is available

Te Whare Tangata: The wahine is acknowledged, protected, nurtured and respected as Te Whare Tangata (the “House of the People”)

Mokopuna: The mokopuna is unique, cared for and inherits the future, a healthy environment, wai u and whanau

Manaakitanga: The midwife is a key person with a clear role and shares with the wahine and her whanau the goal of a safe, healthy, birthing outcome.