Where are the Midwives?

Over the past two decades there has been a slow erosion of maternity services in rural and remote areas in Canada. Many rural residents have been vocal about their opposition to the closures. However, the voices of health care professionals have been missing from the dialogue. In the recently published commentary “The Closure of Rural and Remote Maternity Services: Where are the Midwives?” Dr. Leslie Barclay and Dr. Jude Kornelsen argue that it is the responsibility of professional bodies to advocate for sustaining maternity services in rural and remote areas. The authors defend their belief that it is necessary for midwives to speak out and advocate as a means to effect system changes for both political and strategic reasons. Researchers must continue to develop evidence that can be used as a basis for strong advocacy on behalf of women living in rural and remote areas. System-level changes cannot be done by individuals alone; they require collective effort from professional bodies in all pertinent fields. Those who read this article will gain insight into the current situation facing rural and remote women, and how we all have a role to play in maintaining maternity services.

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