Key messages

  • Funding is available to attract and retain midwifery graduates and midwives in rural areas.
  • Postgraduate midwifery scholarships are available for rural registered nurses.
  • The Maternity Connect Program (MCP) helps midwives in rural health services to update their skills.
  • Private midwives can obtain admitting rights in public health services.
  • Suitably qualified and authorised registered midwives can prescribe scheduled medicines.

Maternity Connect Program

The Maternity Connect Program (MCP) is a Department of Health and Human Services initiative to support public rural maternity services and their workforce to meet their maternity population care needs.

This program focuses on supporting midwives and nurses working in maternity services to develop and maintain their skills and competence through a clinical exposure placement at a higher acuity service.

Western Health is operating the program on behalf of the department.

Eligible midwives and collaborative arrangements: an implementation framework for Victorian public health services

In 2012 the department developed an addendum to the credentialling and defining the scope of clinical practice for medical practitioners in Victorian health services policy to:

  • guide health services on the minimum requirements for credentialling
  • define the scope of practice for privately practising midwives.

This follows legislative changes enacted by the Commonwealth and Victorian governments that facilitate private midwifery practice models in public health services.

The toolkit page provides a template for credentialling and defining the scope of clinical practice for eligible midwives.

In partnership with the 3Centres Collaboration (Mercy Hospital for Women, Monash Medical Centre, The Royal Women’s Hospital), the department developed Eligible midwives and collaborative arrangements: an implementation framework for Victorian public health services to guide Victorian health services participating in collaborative arrangements with eligible midwives.

Amendments to the Drugs Poisons and Controlled Substances Act

The Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Amendment (Supply by Midwives) Act 2012 amends the Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Act 1981 to allow suitably qualified and authorised registered midwives to prescribe scheduled medicines.

Some of the questions regarding the amendments to the Act and the ministerial approved list of drugs for endorsed midwives are answered in the ‘Frequently asked questions’ document listed below.

Prescribing list for endorsed midwives

The Minister for Health approved the list of scheduled medicines for use and supply by endorsed midwives, and the list was published in the Victoria Government Gazette no. S 410 on 20 November 2012.