The College of Midwives of Ontario requires two midwives (or one midwife and one senior midwifery student) in attendance at your birth.
There are 2 exceptions: If your care has been transferred to an obstetrician for the birth, your midwife may decide that having a second midwife at the birth is not necessary. OR Your midwife may decide to call upon the assistance of a Second Birth Attendant (instead of calling for a second midwife) to help provide care for you and your newborn at the birth.
A Second Birth Attendant is someone other than a registered midwife who is authorized by the College of Midwives of Ontario to assist at a midwife attended birth. The second attendant must meet competency requirements set out by the College of Midwives of Ontario. The Second Birth Attendants at our practice are either registered nurses or graduates of the Midwifery Education Programme whose registration is pending.
The Second Birth Attendant MAY be directed by your midwife to assist with the following:
- Provide you with labour support
- Listen to your baby’s heart rate during labour
- Take your blood pressure, pulse, and temperature
- Assess contractions by feeling your belly
- Draw blood samples from yourself or the baby’s cord
- Place an IV catheter
- Administer drugs
- Insert a urinary catheter
- Initiate CPR
- Check your baby’s heart rate, breathing, and temperature
- Initiate newborn resuscitation
The Second Birth Attendant MAY NOT:
- provide care in the absence of a registered midwife
- provide care outside of the birth and immediate postpartum period
- provide midwifery advice
- perform the newborn exam