Member for Mulgrave Curtis Pitt today paid tribute to Queensland’s dedicated team of midwives.

“Midwives play such an important role in what is one of the most memorable days in a woman’s life,” Mr Pitt said.

“It’s only fitting that on International Midwives Day (Thurs May 5) we should recognise their work.”

Mr Pitt said around 1510 midwives helped support around 42,000 Queensland women who give birth in Queensland public hospitals each year.

“I know the team at our local hospitals provide a fantastic service to families, and I want to take this opportunity to recognise their hard work.

“Midwives not only support women through the birth itself, they also provide antenatal services and support for families after a child is born.

“The Bligh Government is providing more and more of these services for families in their local communities.

“It’s part of our commitment to delivering more services for Queenslanders sooner, closer to home.”

Mr Pitt said the support of a midwife helped smooth the way for many mums, particularly those giving birth for the first time.

“The experience of pregnancy, particularly for first time mums, can be quite daunting for many women,” Mr Pitt said.

“Midwives can support and educate women to a stage where they feel more confident about having their baby.

“While all women will receive care from a midwife at some stage throughout their pregnancy and birth,

some women will need access to other members of the health care team during this time.

“For women who require intervention, or help with birth, a midwife will support a doctor to deliver the baby.”

Mr Pitt said the support provided by midwives to women after birth can also help women feel more confident in caring for their babies when they go home.

International Midwives Day is celebrated on May 5. The aim of the day is to celebrate midwifery and to bring awareness of the importance of midwives’ work to as many people around the world as possible.