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Important Announcement: New directions for Midwives Naturally

As we celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Midwives Naturally group practice we reflected on all that we had achieved together as Melbourne’s first midwifery group practice and the changes that have occurred during this time.

As we entered 2015 we became aware that some changes were necessary as we were all moving in different directions and needed a new focus. It has been decided that the group formerly known as Midwives Naturally will no longer exist. As a consequence of these reflections, all the members of Midwives Naturally have decided to move on to pastures new.

Celine Conrad and her family are moving to Bega for a lifestyle change and we are sad to say farewell to Celine who has been a real asset to our group; and we wish her every success in her future endeavors.

Malinda Morieson and Helen Brown have chosen to continue to practice together in partnership as private midwives. Contact details can be found on our profiles on this webpage.

Clare Lane and Nicola Dutton will continue to work together as private practice midwives. Profiles and contact details can also be found below.

Jennie Teskey continues to offer shared antenatal care with The Women’s, The Mercy, The Northern and Sunshine Hospitals. Jennie provides postnatal care and counseling for antenatal and postnatal depression/ anxiety and for women who have experienced difficult or traumatic births. Her rooms are in Alphington however home visits can be arranged. Medicare rebates are available.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the families that we have worked with over the years for their love and support and we are looking forward to working with some of you again in the future.

The profiles below outline the individual journeys in midwifery of each of the former Midwives Naturally group members.

Contact numbers and email addresses are displayed within each profile and all group members encourage you to reach out by phone or email should you wish to speak with anyone directly.

Helen Brown

Midwife and Mother of 3 Children

Hi, my name is Helen Brown and I have been a midwife for 30 years. I have spent 22 of those years working in, or teaching, continuity of midwifery care models.

I am originally from the UK where I trained as a nurse, then as a midwife. After a year as a registered midwife in the UK, I moved to NZ where I worked as a hospital midwife for 7 years. During that time apart from working with birthing women and their families I was fortunate enough to spend 3 years working in Neonatal Intensive care working with unwell babies. I learned a lot about recognizing when a newborn baby is healthy and when they aren’t and the impact that has on the family unit.

In 1992 I formed a group midwifery practice with 3 other midwives and we did 50% home birth and 50% hospital and birth centre birth. Our group conducted our own antenatal classes and provided antenatal, labour and postnatal care up to and including the 6/52 check. Skills included: perineal suturing, I.V. cannulation and neonatal resusitation.

I loved doing homebirths and found my true passion as a midwife, learning from women birthing in their own environment. My learning curve was steep!

In 1996 after the birth of my third child we moved to Melbourne and I discovered midwifery and birth were different in Australia! Homebirth was not a publically-funded mainstream option for women and homebirth midwives could not get indemnity insurance. So I decided to update my qualifications and do some research regarding women’s decision making for place of birth and primary caregiver. After finishing my Masters degree in midwifery I decided to teach midwifery and became a midwifery lecturer and clinical educator.

After 3 years of teaching midwifery which I enjoyed-I realized I missed working with birthing women too much! So I started working at a birth centre and doing homebirths part-time. The birth center was where I first met the lovely Malinda Morrieson and enjoyed her enthusiasm and passion for midwifery.

In 2005, myself and 3 other midwives formed Midwives Naturally, the first group midwifery practice offering continuity of caregiver via homebirth and hospital support to women in Melbourne. I have thoroughly enjoyed my 10 years with Midwives Naturally and have learned a lot! Now I feel it’s the end of an era and its time to move on to pastures new.

As part of a new beginning this year Malinda Morieson and I are excited about continuing to work together in a new Midwifery partnership. We each bring our unique midwifery skills and knowledge to the practice and by working together we will continue to offer a high standard of midwifery care to women and their families.

Midwifery strengths:
My main strength would be my learned ability to be with women, to actively listen, and to hear their voices. This is achieved, I believe, through the building of a trusting relationship in the antenatal period and reflected in the women’s positive birth outcomes and midwifery care evaluations.

Midwifery skills:

  • Neonatal Resuscitation
  • IV Cannulation
  • Perineal Suturing

Areas of special Interest:

  • Keeping birth normal
  • Working with women having their first baby to prevent primary caesarean section
  • Promoting, encouraging and supporting VBAC

My birthing history:

  • 2 caesarean sections and 1 VBAC at home

E-mail: h_brown58@bigpond.com
Mobile: 0416 201 143

Malinda

Malinda Morieson

Midwife & Mother of 3 Children

My desire to be a midwife began with the birth of my first son in 1993. I had a very positive birth experience despite being in hospital and came away from it thinking to myself what an amazing job that midwife has. There began my midwifery journey. Several years later and two more babies I came across The Bachelor of Midwifery, which is a direct entry into the midwifery world without the need to do nursing first. In 2002 I applied and was one of only 25 successful applicants in becoming part of a new era in midwifery education, The Bachelor of Midwifery. This was a three year full time course focused entirely on holistic midwifery care with a family centred approach. Midwifery and birth became an addiction for me and the more I learnt the more I wanted to know. This continues today.

My journey after graduating was perfect, sometimes I have to pinch myself because I have gone from one amazing employment experience to the next and each time growing in my knowledge and experience as an autonomous midwife. I was lucky enough to start my journey at The Angliss Family Birth Centre as a third year student. The Birth Centre showed me what birthing women are truly capable of when supported, trusted and encouraged by their caregivers. It was at the Birth centre where I first met Helen Brown and and with guidance and nurturing from both Helen and several other wonderful midwives I learnt to understand, completely trust and believe in birthing women.

In 2004 I completed my Bachelor of Midwifery and started my graduate year at The Angliss Hospital consolidating my skills in all aspects of midwifery care including Special Care Nursery, Labour Ward, including high intervention birthing, and postnatal care but always knew in my heart it was physiological birth I truly believed in and yearned to be part of.

My Graduate year ended in early 2006 so I decided to expand my exposure to other maternity services and joined the team of midwives at Casey maternity unit in Berwick. This was a large maternity unit with midwifery led, low intervention care. A fully integrated unit meant my working area and focus changed on a daily basis which was fantastic for developing new skills. Casey also offered an excellent education program which enabled me to gain accreditation in other significant areas such as water births, perineal suturing and cannulation.

In late 2006 a permanent position was advertised in the Birth Centre and I knew it was where I wanted to be. I was successful in my application and was thrilled to be part of a small team offering great care to the families who chose to birth with us.

I enjoyed working at the birth centre but my curiosity about the world of homebirths and true physiological birth was a growing force inside me. Eventually it became so great that I could no longer ignore it, I spoke to the other midwives at Midwives Naturally and they were more than happy for me to become part of their growing team. I resigned from the birth centre in early 2008 and began working with Midwives Naturally immediately. I worked as an associate midwife with Midwives Naturally for several years until a position became available as one of their directors. I was offered the position and happily accepted as this was a great opportunity. I was providing both homebirth and hospital support to our incredible clients and met some amazing families along the way. I knew at this point I was so spoilt in the world of private midwifery that I would never be able to work for a hospital again!

In 2015 I decided it was time for a change and left Midwives Naturally to begin a new venture with my colleague and great friend Helen Brown. We service all of Melbourne and between us offer an amazing array of skills and experience to our clients and their families. I love being invited into our clients’ homes to support them in their birthing journeys. I couldn’t imagine doing it any other way. My three children are all young adults now and have travelled on this magical journey with me and they all have a keen interest in my work. My daughter had her first baby at the end of last year and I am loving having this little guy in our lives. I was fortunate enough to be at the birth of my grandson and feel so lucky and blessed to have been able to share this with my daughter and her partner.

I believe birthing is a journey of self-discovery and self-belief and every birth is unique and amazing. A huge part of my continued learning comes from birthing women and the experiences and stories they bring with them…

Good luck with your journey.
E-mail: mal.m4@bigpond.com
Phone: (03) 9725 0654
Mobile: 0408 363 802

Jennie Teskey

Midwife, Counsellor and Mother of 2 Children

I was born at home in Richmond, SW London with a community midwife in attendance. My father still lives in this house and my midwife still lives in the area. My mother was a childbirth educator and founder member of the National Childbirth Trust, alongside Sheila Kitzinger.
During my childhood, scores of pregnant women came in and out of the house for their classes which included psychoprophylaxis (breathing and relaxation), hence loads of cushions for me to jump on (when the classes weren’t being run!) This was certainly an early influence on my career choice.

During my nurse training at Kings College Hospital in London from 1979 to 1982 I spent 2 months in obstetrics and had my first experience of catching a baby. I absolutely loved it and applied for my midwifery training at The Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital in the West Country. It was an 18 month course which I started in 1985 (after a couple of years of travel and work around the world.)

In December 1987 I immigrated to Melbourne with my husband and 4 month old son Josh and after a few months of settling in I started work at Mitcham Private Hospital. I soon worked out that it was not possible to practice autonomously as a midwife through the hospital system. I was lucky enough to find out about an established GP homebirth practice and even luckier to get a job there.

Since 1988 I have attended nearly a thousand births, (600 at home) and I have also provided support for women choosing to birth their babies in hospital. The satisfaction I get from providing continuity of care is enormous. There are some families for whom I have attended 4 births and there are some women whose births I attended many years ago and they are now having their own babies. Perhaps my attendance at these births makes me a grand midwife!

I birthed at home in Warrandyte for my second son. My sons are now grown up and have left home. They are talented musicians and are in a band called The Teskey Brothers. My husband Rob has been tirelessly patient and supportive of my passion for midwifery and my on call lifestyle, for which I am eternally grateful.

I have completed a Master of Counselling at La Trobe University and I am now offering counselling for women who need to debrief their birth experience and for women who are experiencing transition to parenting issues or antenatal/ postnatal depression or anxiety. I am also available to counsel student midwives and midwives who are struggling working in an extremely stretched maternity care system.

In 2011 I became an Eligible Midwife, which means I have a medicare provider number so my clients can receive a rebate on their antenatal and postnatal care. I am also a shared care provider at The Women’s, Sunshine and The Mercy Hospitals, so for any women wishing to book into those hospitals, I can provide most of the antenatal care as an alternative to seeing a GP. I am able to order blood tests and ultrasound scans and have completed an online prescribing course at Flinders University, South Australia as a part of the requirement for Midwife Eligibility.

I am not taking any primary bookings for births and instead concentrating on antenatal care and education, postnatal care and counselling. I will however help out with births in the practice when the other midwives are busy.

I am a member of:

  • Midwives in Private Practice
  • Maternity Coalition
  • Australian College of Midwives
  • Australian Privately Practising Midwives Association

E-mail: jennieteskey@gmail.com
Mobile: 0419 156 041

Nicola

Nicola Dutton

Midwife and Mother of 1 child

Hi, My name is Nicola Dutton and I have been passionate about Midwifery and being ‘with woman’ since the age of 10.

My lifelong journey began in Wales UK, when my mother was pregnant with her fourth child. I was totally involved in the pregnancy and couldn’t wait for my mum to birth her baby. She showed how normal and family orientated the process was. Fit and well, the pregnancy developed and I was woken to time her contractions whilst she sat on the loo. I was full of quiet excitement and anticipation of the impending birth where I was to help support my Mum. Unfortunately, the Community Midwife who arrived at our house was unknown to us and quickly announced that children did not attend births and I could not go as my Mum was carted off to hospital by ambulance 30 miles away. It turned out that my little sister was born by caesarian section – footling breech. How I wish I’d been her Midwife. She says that there wasn’t any support at the hospital to birth her baby and being away from her family, she discharged herself after 2 days. Once home my sister, my baby was immersed into family life, cherished and loved by us all.

Jumping 8 years, I knew that those early impressions of being ‘with woman’ and pregnancy and birth being a normal life event meant that I should follow my heart and intuition and I enrolled in a Bsc of Nursing degree at Monash University, Frankston with the aim of pursuing my midwifery after completion.

In the last year of nursing training, I was pregnant. I knew that hospitals were full of sick people and I never felt healthier so I choose a birth centre in Melbourne that would support my choices to birth, as I knew my body could birth without unnecessary aid or intervention. The birth of my daughter Naomi was life altering, affirming my beliefs that pregnancy, labour and birth was a normal life event. The support and encouragement of the midwives was invaluable. I’ll never forget them! The sense of satisfaction I felt, ‘I did it!’ was awesome and no one can take that achievement away.

So, after 3 years of Nursing and Mothering, I travelled back to the UK to embark on my lifelong dream and commenced my Midwifery degree at Thames Valley University, Ealing. I learnt all about the Challenges of Childbirth, Continuity, Choice and Control and how the medical domination of Childbirth had reduced this very normal life event to ‘Accidents waiting to happen’ and ‘only normal in hindsight’. The option of homebirth and continuity of midwife care were available but not common. However, I did attend a planned homebirth and arrived after the baby was born in the middle of the night, in the midst of quiet and calm, candles lighting up the birthing space with the proud father catching the baby with no fuss or commotion. The Midwife ‘helped’ the placenta out and I immersed myself in the beautiful atmosphere that I’d been invited to share. I truly felt honoured to be there and it was such a contrast to the cold, clinical environment of the ‘birthing suite’ at the hospital, where intervention was commonplace, I was home.

I completed the Midwifery course in 1998 and couldn’t wait to get back to Australia to practice what I’d learnt, only to find options in Childbirth were even less than in England and that Obstetrics dominated. Fortunately, seek and you will find. The hard to find options of Midwifery models of care and homebirth were available.

I worked in the Know your Midwife Programme at Boxhill hospital from 2001 to 2008 offering continuity of carer in the hospital setting. During this time, I was also fortunate to attend many planned births at home. These paths led me to move fully in to private practice in 2005 as a director in the first private midwifery group practice in Melbourne – Midwives Naturally. During the last 10 years I have grown even more passionate about being ‘with woman’ wherever they choose to birth their babies. These opportunities have also enabled me to work with women in partnership, throughout the childbirth continuum.

I provide women and their families with informed choices, based on up to date evidence and Midwifery knowledge, attending regular conferences, seminars and workshops that support the normal birthing process. I’m inspired by the birthing woman’s ability to birth their own babies, their strength and determination to achieve a satisfying birth experience, without intervention, which enhances their breast-feeding and parenting experience.

I have since completed the eligibility criteria & prescribing course requirements that allow me to offer Medicare rebates for pregnancy and post birth care. Special interests include acupressure, waterbirth, homeopathy and ensuring that women have access to all holistic modalities to optimise their birth outcomes.

I am also a strong advocate for human rights in childbirth & building a legacy for Naomi and all women to have a choice of where they birth and with whom birth with. I am also strongly committed to developing our midwifery profession as a Victorian committee member of the Australian College of Midwives.

2015 brings an end of an era as Midwives Naturally Group Practice closes its practice. However, with any endings there is opportunity for new beginnings and I look forward to continuing to offer women and their families alongside Clare Lane in our newly formed partnership.

Medicare rebates available for pregnancy and post birth care.

Please feel free to contact me or Clare for further details.

E-mail: midwifenicola@gmail.com
Mobile: 0433 810 389
Connect with Nicola via Linkedin: Click here.

Clare

Clare Lane

Midwife and Mother of 4 Children

My name is Clare Lane. When I was 10 my mother had my youngest sister and I helped mum care for her, this gave me loads of practical skills and set me on my midwifery path. I loved babies and small children and knew my destiny lay in that direction. I have been a midwife now for 27 years. I have experience working both in the home and hospital setting. I am Medicare eligible and am endorsed to be able to prescribe and order my own blood tests and scans. I have had midwife care for the birth of my 4 children, one in a birth centre and 3 at home.

My other passion is breastfeeding and I am a qualified lactation consultant with 12 years experience in this area. I am experienced in waterbirth and helping women have a vaginal birth after a caesarean. My other interests include aromatherapy, massage and homeopathy for use in pregnancy and childbirth.

I am passionate about working with pregnant women and their families. Having a baby is a fabulous, exciting adventure and I am very privileged to go with women on that journey.

Medicare rebates available for pregnancy and post birth care.

E-mail: clare@optusnet.com.au
Phone: (03) 9884 8610
Mobile: 0416 130 291