The Department of Health & Human Services has expanded its credentialling and clinical practice guidelines to accommodate registered private midwives who are eligible to provide care in obstetrics departments in public hospitals.
An addendum to the policy for credentialling and defining the scope of clinical practice for medical practitioners in Victorian health services provides guidance to health services on the minimum requirements for credentialling and defining the scope of practice for eligible midwives.
A framework for collaboration
In partnership with the 3Centres Collaboration (Mercy Hospital for Women, Monash Medical Centre and Royal Women’s Hospital), the department has developed an implementation framework to guide Victorian health services in supporting collaborative arrangements between eligible midwives and obstetric medical practitioners.
Admitting rights and scope of practice for eligible midwives are generally granted at the discretion of individual health services.
The implementation framework outlines policies and regulations, guiding principles, and guidance for health services on arrangements with eligible midwives in six key areas:
- planning for collaborative arrangements
- credentialling and scope of practice for eligible midwives
- admission practices
- clinical governance and support
- role delineation, care planning and documentation
- review, ongoing monitoring and evaluation.
Credentialling of eligible midwives
Each health service’s credentialling committee is responsible for credentialling eligible midwives seeking to provide private maternity services on their premises. Health services should ensure that:
- their policies and processes for credentialling midwives and defining their scope of practice are equitable and consistent with those used for other health practitioners
- they inform eligible midwives of their verification and re-credentialling policies and procedures at the time of their initial credentialling
- the credentialling committee has senior midwifery representation to ensure a peer-based process for eligible midwives
- re-credentialling occurs 12 months after a midwife’s initial credentialling, and an appropriate process and timeframe are determined for further re-credentialling
- eligible midwives’ registration and insurance are checked on an annual basis.