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About us

Keeping women and babies safe

The Midwifery Council is the regulatory authority set up to guard professional standards in midwifery. We make sure midwives meet and maintain professional standards of education, conduct and performance so that they deliver high quality healthcare throughout their careers – and we hold them to account if they fall short. We know the safety of mothers and babies comes first.

Every day our midwives welcome some 168 new babies into the world in New Zealand.

Professional regulation exists for one purpose - to keep the public safe.

Mothers need to know what to expect and get what they expect. They need to be sure professional midwives are doing their job to a consistently high standard.

We see regulation as the ambulance at the top of the cliff, intervening early on to stop small problems becoming big problems. We set standards of education, training, conduct and performance and hold midwives accountable to those standards so that they deliver high quality healthcare throughout their careers. 

What do we do?

Our functions, as for all health authorities, are legislated by parliament.

The Health Practitioners Competence Assurance provides a framework to safeguard the public. The Act says we must:

  • Define the Midwifery Scope(s) of Practice and prescribe the qualifications required of registered midwives
  • Accredit midwifery educational institutions and programmes
  • Maintain a public Register of midwives who have the required qualifications and are competent and fit to practise
  • Issue practising certificates to midwives who maintain their competence
  • Establish programmes to assess and promote midwives’ ongoing competence
  • Deal with complaints and concerns about midwives’ conduct, competence and health
  • Set the midwifery profession’s standards for clinical and cultural competence and ethical conduct
  • Promote education and training in midwifery
  • Promote public awareness of the Council’s responsibilities