Counties Manukau Health has full contingency plans in place ahead of the expected industrial action by Midwifery Employee Representation and Advisory Service (MERAS) members starting on Thursday and continue for a series of two-hour strikes twice each day until 5 December.
This industrial action does not include self-employed midwives: Lead Maternity Carers and midwives who are not members of MERAS.
“We respect the important role our midwives play, and respect their right to take industrial action,” says Chief Medical Officer, Dr Gloria Johnson.
“Our priority is the health and wellbeing of women and babies and their families. We have a duty of care to ensure that we have contingency plans in place to provide the care and support they need during this period.
“Our plans aim to ensure that the strike will not affect the quality and safety of care for women and babies, although the staff member caring for them may change during the hours of strike action.
“Some of our non-urgent women’s appointments may be rescheduled and women will be contacted directly. A large number of our health services are unaffected.
“We apologise to members of our community, who may be impacted by this industrial action,” says Dr Johnson.
“Please contact your Midwife if you are uncertain or have concerns. We want to assure women and their families that we are here if you need us. We will have staff available for care which cannot be deferred during the strike hours.”
In an emergency always call 111.