Message from the President and Executive Director
In 2018, the collective effort of midwives, channeled through a strong and effective association, made important contributions to developing the profession of midwifery; promoting the health of families, newborns and communities and to championing gender equity and social justice.
We are pleased to present to you the highlights of what we have accomplished in 2018 in this annual report. As you’ll see, our work has made important in-roads into the four prongs of our strategic plan:
The Restoration and Renewal of Indigenous/Aboriginal Midwifery
A Strong, Equitable, Integrated & Valued Midwifery Profession
Flexibility to Provide Sustainable Care & Innovation to Meet the Diverse Needs of Communities & Midwives
Advancement of Client-Centred Midwifery Clinical Excellence
Midwifery is healthy and growing. By the end of 2018, our membership reached a total of 923 midwives, including 70 newly registered midwives. Three new midwifery practice groups were established, making a total of 92 practice groups and 23 satellites across Ontario. New practices led by Indigenous midwives working under the Aboriginal exemption in the Midwifery Act flourished. Community health centres and Aboriginal Health Access Centres set up midwifery programs and hired midwives into their fold. We underwent governance changes that enable appointment of positions in order to increase diversity among our leadership.
Additionally, 2018 marked the second year of new funding mechanisms that provided for Indigenous-led midwifery, Expanded Midwifery Care Models (EMCMs), and the provision of additional services to meet community health needs. Five new EMCM programs, including a midwife-led unit in a hospital and midwifery employee positions in community health centres were established.
Despite our successes and contributions to health care, our deeply skilled and expert work is still too often undervalued. We face persistent challenges in a health care system that still limits our scope of practice. Despite our historic pay equity win at the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario, government has chosen to appeal the decision, instead of working in partnership to close the pay equity gap.
June 2018 also witnessed a major political upheaval in our province and with it rapid and profound changes to the health care system.
Together, and rooted deeply in our values, we persist. We hope you take comfort in the small but mighty force that are midwives as you read about what we have accomplished together. We know we have so much more to do and we know that we’ll accomplish it, in time, together.
We are grateful to the midwives who provide leadership, whether in their practices or at the AOM. Midwifery volunteers are at the heart of our work, whether they are supporting the development of quality peer-reviewed clinical practice guidelines, quality improvement standards, drafting policy statements and submissions, or whether they are, most importantly but perhaps most hidden, responding to a page in the middle of the night.
In strength and solidarity,
AOM President Elizabeth Brandeis, RM, MSc and Executive Director Kelly Stadelbauer, RN, BScN, MBA