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Midwives provide care and support to women and their families while pregnant, throughout labour and during the period after a baby’s birth.
Training and qualifications required
Training to be a midwife involves studying for a degree in midwifery or a degree apprenticeship in midwifery. there are no national minimum academic entry requirements for entry into pre-registration midwifery degrees or degree apprenticeships as each university (running degree courses) and employer (offering apprenticeships) sets its own criteria. However, they usually look for a minimum of five GCSEs at grade 9-4/C or above - typically including English language or literature and a science subject - and either two or three A-levels or equivalent.
Expected working hours and salary range
Midwives working on maternity wards are likely to work shifts while those in the community are more likely to work a 9 to 5 day but could be on-call for home births. Qualified midwives in the NHS start at Agenda for Change Band 5. With more experience and additional responsibility, you could move through the banding to senior management.
Desirable skills and values
There are a range of important skills and knowledge you will need to pursue a career in midwifery. Excellent people and communication skills, an ability to answer questions and offer advice and dealing with emotionally charged situations are all skills you'll need. If you're applying for a role either directly in the NHS, you'll be asked to show how you think the values of the NHS Constitution apply in your everyday work. The same will be true if you are applying for a university course funded by the NHS.
There are lots of opportunities for midwives to progress their career with more experience. You could become supervise of team of midwives. You could also move in health visiting with additional training or move into clinical academic research.