Due date set for arrival of student midwives


Midwifery lecturer Lisa Charmer … “I’ve delivered a few in the (hospital) car park.”

Midwifery lecturer Lisa Charmer … “I’ve delivered a few in the (hospital) car park.”

Charles Darwin University will host its first clinical training block for midwives at Alice Springs campus, it was revealed today in the lead-up to International Day of the Midwife this weekend.

About 20 Bachelor of Midwifery students from all parts of Australia will gather for the week-long intensive, which will be run from the clinical simulation laboratory on Alice Springs campus in August.

Midwifery lecturer Lisa Charmer said it was a reflection of the strength and flexibility of CDU’s direct entry Bachelor of Midwifery course, now in its third year.

“We have 125 students progressing through the course, including about 20 who are on target to become our first graduates at the end of the year,” she said.

“Three of those live and study here in Alice Springs and work at the hospital where about 800 babies are born each year.”

Ms Charmer, who moved to Alice Springs just four months ago to take up the role of Midwifery Lecturer, said she had lost count of the number of babies she had been present at the birth of in a career that began in the UK more than 10 years ago.

“I remember the first one though; it was a girl,” she said.

“And I cried.

“I was a student nurse observing a birth in a maternity ward near Manchester. It was such a profound experience that I decided then and there to switch from nursing to midwifery.”

Ms Charmer said midwifery continued to be an exciting and rewarding career that sometimes produced a few surprises.

“Sometimes they don’t quite make it to the hospital on time,” said Ms Charmer, who worked at New South Wales’ John Hunter Hospital before moving to the NT.

“I’ve delivered a few in the car park (outside the hospital),” she said.

Ms Charmer said she would celebrate International Day of the Midwife (5 May) by attending the Australian College of Midwives dinner in Alice Springs this weekend.

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