Regulation & Education

Regulation

The profession of midwifery is regulated by the College of Midwives of Ontario (CMO), in accordance with the Regulated Health Professions Act (RHPA). The CMO protects childbearing clients and infants by ensuring that midwives provide competent and ethical care. The CMO is responsible for registering midwives, ensuring the quality of midwifery care, setting standards, and investigating and responding to any issues related to midwifery care. Midwives who are registered with the CMO are permitted to use the protected title of Registered Midwife, or RM.

In First Nations communities in Ontario, Aboriginal midwives are permitted to provide care without being registered with the CMO, as a result of a provision made in the Midwifery Act. This provision indicates that an Aboriginal person who provides traditional midwifery services may use the title “Aboriginal midwife,” and may hold themselves out as a person who is qualified to practice in Ontario as an Aboriginal midwife. In communities where Aboriginal midwives are providing services, the protection of the public becomes the responsibility of the community and/or the band council, rather than the CMO.

Education

All midwives practicing in Ontario have graduated from rigorous midwifery education programs. They become experts in uncomplicated birth and emergency procedures by studying health, social and biological sciences in the classroom, completing clinical placements under the supervision of experienced midwives, attending births as secondary and primary care providers, and providing prenatal and postpartum care in midwifery clinics and clients’ homes.

There are four possible educational paths to becoming a midwife in this province:

Midwifery students wearing red shoes at graduation

A time-honoured MEP tradition: red shoes on graduation day!