Heartland Magazine Issue 27, News and Events NSW Northern Rivers, Advertising NSW

What about the babies?- Mandated midwife and nurse ratios needed

What about the babies?- Mandated midwife and nurse ratios needed

Member for Ballina Tamara Smith MP welcomes any increased investment in nurses, midwives and health in NSW by the Premier but is critical of the government’s timing and its lack of detail.

Ms Smith said “The Premier has announced increased numbers of nurses weeks before a state election but with no detail of current nurse shortages and no commitment to better nurse/ patient ratios – doing this treats communities like mugs and the views of nurses and midwives with disrespect.”

“Since 2012 we have seen an 8.4 % decrease in breastfeeding rates in NSW as midwives struggle to give new mums the education and support they need and deserve, as there are no mandated ratios in place.”

“The NSW Greens support a ratio of 1:3 midwives to mothers at a minimum in postnatal wards and publicly funded access for all women to a lactation consultant in all maternity wards.

“The Liberal-National coalition and Labor should be committing to mandated nurse/ patient ratios in all hospitals in NSW similar to what they have introduced in Queensland and Victoria.

“Only the Greens have committed to best practice and all of the evidence shows that it is those mandated ratios that save lives, improve health outcomes and make a guaranteed difference.”

“We are calling for a ratio of 1 midwife to 3 mothers in postnatal wards. That kind of support for new mums will see higher breastfeeding rates and ultimately better health outcomes for mums and bubs and less stress for our midwives and nurses.”

“It’s time for the old parties to get real when it comes to the health of our communities and what is more important than newborn babies and their mothers?,” said Ms Smith.