Peel Health Campus midwife recognised on International Day of the Midwife

Alana Matson. Picture: Jon Hewson
Peel Health Campus midwife recognised on International Day of the Midwife
Alana Matson. Picture: Jon Hewson

AFTER six years, Peel Health Campus midwife Alana Matson is still fascinated by the birthing process.

Ms Matson was recognised today, International Day of the Midwife, for her win in the state category of the Johnson & Johnson’s State Midwife of the Year awards.

The patient who nominated Ms Matson described her as “full of energy and love” and as a woman who “puts her heart and soul” into her job.

It was love for the job that took Ms Matson to Nepal to educate village women on childbirth.

“The good thing about delivering babies is they can nearly be delivered anywhere, from the labour ward bed, to the shower, toilets, corridors, ward bedrooms, assessment rooms to emergency departments,” she said.

“No birth is ever the same.”

Ms Matson believes a great relationship with patients and families is a core quality of a good midwife.

“Sometimes (this relationship) needs to be made as soon as you walk into the room due to shift changes and women about to have their babies,” she said.

“It’s important to remember that even though we do this every day, our patients don’t, and we need to give them the best and most memorable experience to remember, because it doesn’t matter if its your first or fifth baby, this moment changes your life forever, and these families remember this day forever.

“When a women says thank you for giving them a birth experience that they are proud of, it makes you proud as a midwife.”

Like many nurses, Ms Matson said she has been covered in different fluids throughout her career.

“Which seems to usually be when I’m wearing my white Christmas scrubs,” she said.

“My husband knows I have had an eventful shift when I get home and am not in my original uniform and put my scrubs straight into the wash.

“I have been a part of births which make you laugh and births which make you cry.

“Seeing a baby born in it amniotic sack has always stuck with me and when a first time mum breathes her baby out, completely in tune with her body, it’s something which makes you realise how amazing the female body is.”

Women surprise Ms Matson every day with their “strength, focus and capabilities”.

“People often believe that you have to love babies to become a midwife, but that is a very small portion of what this job is about,” she said.

“It’s more about the women and their families.

“Midwives are people who care about others, communicate well, offer guidance, support and work great as a team.”

Ms Matson said it is common for midwives to put patients’ needs before their own.

“Whether it’s having a shorter lunch break to be with your women, forgetting toilet breaks throughout the day or staying back to be there for a women you have been with all day to see her have a baby after your shift has ended,” she said.

“I believe everyone should witness the birth of a child at least once in their lifetime because it truly is an amazing, unforgettable experience.

“If anyone is thinking of doing this then I say go for it, and you will never regret it.”