BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Australian rural areas access to midwifery continuity of carer models is restricted. Lack of medical support has been identified as one of the reasons midwifery continuity of carer models have not been implemented. The purpose of his study was to explore rural Australian doctors’ views about midwifery and midwifery continuity of carer models. STUDY DESIGN: A qualitative study with general practitioner and specialist obstetricians (n = 10) working in Australian rural maternity services. Semi-structured interviews were undertaken and analyzed using thematic analysis. FINDINGS: Participants’ views of midwifery and midwifery continuity of carer models were expressed in three themes. The themes related to the concepts of knowing: knowing the model, knowing the midwife, and knowing the system. Participants had misconceptions and misunderstandings of the model, midwifery, and systems issues relating to midwifery continuity of carer models. CONCLUSION: Increasing understanding about midwifery and midwifery continuity of carer models may facilitate implementation of these models. A national education program for doctors about the structure and function of midwifery continuity of carer models would support knowledge building for obstetric doctors. Strong leadership and incentivization for health services may be needed to sustainably roll-out rural models. At a service level, responsibility for establishing and sustaining models should shift from local midwife leaders to hospital executives.
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- continuity of carer
- general practitioner
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Obstetrics and Gynaecology
- Maternity and Midwifery