Media statement released by the Midwifery Council of New Zealand regarding media coverage of midwifery shortages

The Council has been closely following media coverage of safe staffing levels within the Midwifery workforce at District Health Boards.

Deputy Registrar of the Midwifery Council, Dr Sue Calvert says: “The Council is working closely with Health Workforce New Zealand, District Health Boards and schools of midwifery to fully understand the extent of any shortages and to initiate responses that will ensure that New Zealand has the midwifery workforce needed to staff a world leading maternity service”.

Internationally qualified midwives who wish to practise in New Zealand must meet the same professional standards as New Zealand graduates.

Dr Calvert says that as a priority the Council’s work is focused on continuing to strengthen the midwifery workforce to ensure that women and their babies receive the level of care that they need and deserve.

Midwifery workforce data

As at 21 Match 2017, there are currently 3151 midwives who hold an annual practising certificate

As at 17/8/2016 (Midwifery Council Workforce Survey 2016)

  • The average age of midwives in New Zealand is 47.7 years. 
  • The average time in the midwifery workforce is 15.2 years.
  • 50.7 % of midwives (1,532) reported core midwifery practice as their first work situation. 

According to the 2016 Annual Report, the Midwifery Council registered 130 New Zealand-educated midwives and 28 internationally qualified midwives in the year ending 31/3/2016.


The Midwifery Council is the regulatory body set up to protect the public by making sure midwives are competent and fit to practise. The Council’s first priority is the safety of mothers and babies.

Released by the Midwifery Council of New Zealand,nz

04 499 5040