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- Help expectant parents before, during and after the birth of their babies
- You'll need specialist training and to keep your skills updated with additional professional development
- Rewarding but challenging work where you'll need to be emotionally strong
Most midwifery jobs are in the NHS but you could also work in private hospitals and clinics, or overseas.
- Give pregnant women and families advice on issues like healthy eating
- Explain options like giving birth in hospital or at home
- Run classes about pregnancy (antenatal) and parenting
- Check the health of mother and baby during pregnancy
During labour, you'll:
- Check how labour is progressing
- Monitor the baby
- Give pain relief or advise on ways to manage pain
- Deliver the baby
- Call in specialists if you notice any problems
After the baby is born, you'll give advice to families on caring for their baby. You could also visit people's homes to check on mother and baby.
You could work at a client's home, at a health centre, at a GP practice or in an NHS or private hospital. Your working environment might be physically and emotionally demanding at times.
You'll need a degree in midwifery to register with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), plus clearance from the Disclosure and Barring Service.
You can also do a midwife degree apprenticeship.
Full-time courses usually take 3 years.
If you're a registered nurse, you may be able to qualify in 18 months.
Health Careers and the Royal College of Midwives have information on a career as a midwife.
The Nursing and Midwifery Council has information on midwifery training and registration.
You must renew your NMC registration regularly to show you're keeping your skills up to date.
To progress into further career roles, you could take further training to specialise in areas like ultrasound or neonatal care. With experience, you could become a ward manager or team leader. You could also become a health visitor, a director of midwifery or midwifery consultant.