The philosophy of midwifery

  • Maternity is a powerful experience and an important process that possesses a great importance for woman, family and community.
  • Midwifery acknowledges pregnancy, delivery and post-delivery period as normal physiological processes, and mother and child as a whole.
  • Midwifery care is a science as well as art. As of its nature, midwifery care is holistic and dynamic, basing on women’s psychological, emotional, physical, cultural and social experiences, and originates from the best evidence base know-how there is.
  • Midwives are provably the most appropriate specialists for offering care during pregnancy, delivery and post-delivery period.
  • Midwives trust and respect women and their ability to carry pregnancy, to give birth and to be a mother.
  • Midwifery care empowers women to take the responsibility for their own and their family’s health.
  • Midwifery care is conducted in cooperation with woman; it is characterized by individual approach, the continuity of caring and respectful attitude.
  • Decisions related with caring are made by woman herself, and she is entitled to receive all necessary evidence based know-how for making the decisions.

Nominal length of study: 4,5 years
Language of studies: Estonian language (in Tallinn)

The midwifery model, based on the philosophy of midwifery
  • Midwifery care promotes, protects and supports the reproductive and sexual rights, and the evolvement of girls and women throughout the life-circle, respects national and cultural features.
  • Midwifery care promotes and protects actively the well-being and health of women and children.
  • Midwives offer continual and flexible care.
  • Midwifery practice promotes women’s confidence to manage as a mother.
  • Midwives provide women and their family necessary information and advice in a way that favours participation and enables informed decision-making.
  • Midwifery care maintains trust and mutual respect between woman and midwife.
  • Midwifery practice promotes and defends the position that in case of normally running processes, intervention is not applied.
  • In case of deflections, midwives use respective instruments and measures, and cooperate with all necessary specialists on all levels of health care system.
  • Midwives have autonomy in their activity and answer for themselves, women, families and the society.
  • Midwives understand individual and collective responsibility in developing the profession and also in training of their successors and colleagues.
Midwife’s international definition

Midwife is a private person who - by having regularly participated and successfully passed the state-approved official midwife trainings in particular country, has thus gained the competency for entering her name into the register of midwives and/or granted the lawful certificate to practice as a midwife. A midwife must be able to provide necessary instructions, care and consulting to women about pregnancy, delivery and the child-bed period; must be able to conduct deliveries on one’s own responsibility and to take care of the new-born and little child. This care-taking comprises the preventing activities and the clarifying of un-normal situations concerning mother and child, as well as acquiring medical help and assistance in emergency situations when medical help is unavailable. Midwife has an important job in health raising and consulting not only among women, but also in the scope of their families and the whole society. This work must comprise prenatal training and preparation for parent’s role. The work must be based on certain knowledge about gynaecology, family planning and childcare. She can practice in hospital as midwife, in consulting or health centres, domestic environment or in other spheres offering health care service. The definition of midwife has been accepted by International Confederation of Midwives – ICM in 1990, International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics in 1991, and World Health Organisation – WHO in 1992.

Compliance to higher education standard and EU directives

The midwife’s study programme of Tallinn Health Care College corresponds to higher education standard and EU directives, the subject matter of which is the integrated studying of theory and practice. The period of studies is 4 years 5 months, theoretical studying is in Estonian language. Study-practice makes 50% from total volume of study programme, taking place in different institutions offering health care and social care services. As the college participates in several international education projects, the students have the possibility to be an exchange student in different European countries. As the midwife study programme contains also the training of general nurse, midwives have thus the opportunity to work as a general nurse, as well as a midwife in different health care institutions. Professional higher education provides the possibility for the midwife for continuing studies on Master level in Estonian as well as European universities.

During the midwifery studies in the chair of midwifery, the practice requirements from EU directive 85/434/EEC from March 07, 2002 are fulfilled:

  1. The consulting of at least 40 pregnant women which includes also at least 100 prenatal visits.
  2. The prenatal observing of at least 40 pregnant women during pregnancy.
  3. Taking at least 40 deliveries; if it is not possible to take as many deliveries due to the lack of birth givers, the number can be at least 30 on condition that the student is assisting in at least 20 more deliveries.
  4. Active assisting in up to 2 breech deliveries which can be performed as simulations if there is lack of such birth givers.
  5. Making an episiotomy and restoring the consistency of birth canal.
  6. The prenatal observing of at least 40 women with pregnancy pathology (risk pregnancy).
  7. The examination, observing and caring of at least 100 post-natal women and healthy newborns.
  8. The observation, consulting and caring of newborns in need of special care, incl premature, post-term, underweight and ill newborn infants and their mothers.
  9. Care of pathological cases in the fields of gynaecology and obstetrics, and diseases of newborn and young babies.
  10. Nursing and midwifery care in case of internal and surgical diseases.

There is not anything nicer than to help to deliver a new citizen into this world! For more information, please write ammaopetajad@ttk.ee.