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18 | Mahurangimatters 19 September 2012


delivering t he best

Philosophy prioritises supportive family environment When the Warkworth Birthing Centre opened in 2000, it had one birthing area and three post-natal rooms. At the end of the current renovation next month, the centre will offer 10 post-natal rooms, and three dedicated assessment and birthing areas. The past 12 years have been busy ones for managing directors, Sue Wynyard and Sally Wilson, and their team of four other midwives. Both women have decades of nursing and midwifery experience, which they have drawn on to develop a centre, which they believe is second-to-none. It is also the only one of its kind between the North Shore and Whangarei. “It’s quite unusual, nationally and internationally, to have a midwiferylead primary unit,” Sue says. The Warkworth Birthing Centre Community Trust owns the building, which is operated independently by Rodney Coast Midwives. “This arrangement gives us autonomy, especially when it comes to deciding our budget priorities. We can make sure the money is used effectively where the need is greatest.” Current renovations began with the sealing of a 17-space public

Birthing Centre managing directors Sue Wynyard (left) and Sally Wilson in one of the new rooms.

carpark, adjoining the centre. This was followed by the construction of a new wing that includes six postnatal rooms, a designated staffroom, office and administration space, and a new parents’ room. The final stage will be the refurbishment of parts of the original area and construction of a second birthing room with a pool. Sally says about 90 percent of women

use the pool at some stage during their labour. “It’s a weightless environment so it provides a greater level of comfort for the women and the warmth helps with pain relief.” Last year, the centre accommodated 142 births and 426 women chose continued next page

Warkworth Birth Centre

quality maternity care

Matt and Elissa Robertson, of Castor Bay, with two-day old Daniel James Burton Robertson. Although Daniel was born in Auckland, the couple received post-natal care in Warkworth. They had nothing but praise for the care and support they received at the centre. “It’s really nice that they let the Dads stay a night – it means we can bond as a family,” Elissa said.

R odney Coast Midwives Birthing Options: • Warkworth Birthing Centre • Wellsford Birthing Unit • North Shore Hospital


• Home

FREE pregnancy tests Prenatal classes, birth venue & post-natal stay Own room in peaceful rural surroundings Excellent equipment and atmosphere Water birth a speciality Midwives on call at all times, and as backup Our friendly helpful postnatal staff at the birthing centre for your caregiver (LMC) For further information talk to your  Full post-natal hospital stay LMC/Midwife or Warkworth Birth Centre  24 hour Registered Nurses / Midwives to care for you and your baby  You can transfer from your birth hospital within Phone 09 425 8201 12 hours of normal birth or 24 hours following a Caesarian      

Available to all women and their caregivers

56 View Road, Warkworth

LYDIA MILLER NZ registered Midwife since 1994

Phone 09 425 7555 Mobile 027 555 1629

Mahurangimatters 19 September 2012 | 19 WARKWORTH BIRTHING CENTRE EXPANSION

delivering t he best


Phone George 021 2800 233


• DRIVEWAYS • FLOORS • • PATHS • ASHPHALT • Congratulations to Sally and Sue. Proud to have donated our time to the Warkworth Birthing Centre.

Sub-divisions • R.O.W’s • Excavations 135M


AUT student midwife Abigail Elmore (left) and senior registered nurse Sara Marshall at the new administration station.

Supportive environment Warkworth for their postnatal care. Of the women who birthed at the centre, 96 percent exclusively breastfed, while the rate among women who birthed at other centres, but received postnatal care at Warkworth, was 91 percent. “The rate is one of the highest in NZ.” Sally and Sue put the centre’s success down to a combination of factors. “Formal feedback tells us that the rural surroundings are a definite drawcard, but the homely atmosphere of the centre, its privacy, the fact that Dads can spend a night, that staff are

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friendly and supportive, and that the individual needs of each family are accommodated, are also routinely mentioned. “It’s so important for family members to bond when a new baby arrives and we do all we can to support that. We don’t have strict rules around how long a mother needs stay after the birth either – it all depends on how she’s managing and feeling. After a normal birth, most mothers are happy to leave after about four days. After a caesarean, the stay is usually a few days longer.”


Privileged to be involved in the Warkworth Birthing Clinic project. We feel a close link with the clinic as several of our employees’ children have been born there. Phone: 021 737 587 or 021 220 5000 Email:


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20 | Mahurangimatters 19 September 2012 WARKWORTH BIRTHING CENTRE EXPANSION

delivering t he best

University study pinpoints centre’s success strategies The Warkworth Birthing Centre is a recognised training organisation, which regularly accepts student midwives, both from NZ and overseas. Director Sally Wilson says the centre has a good relationship with AUT, which also provides education opportunities for centre staff. In 2008, AUT Associate Professor Liz Smythe and Dr Debbie Payne chose the centre for a research study, which examined more closely the “strategies, factors and influences that help achieve sustainable excellence.” Sally says the study arose from a discussion between the centre and academic researchers. “Having sat through a presentation at the College of Midwives Conference which highlighted the issues confronting midwives such as low breastfeeding rates, increasing rates of intervention during labour and birth, and midwifery burnout, I knew we were doing something at Warkworth that needed to be shared,” she says. Rather than narrow the study down to one particular aspect of the centre’s operation, the researchers decided to pursue the question: ‘What works well here?’

Builder Rob Dunne thanked staff for their patience during the renovations.

“Please don’t wake the babies!” Following the success of the first study, a second project looked at the subject of ‘keeping birth normal’.

Their research found that the Warkworth centre exemplified the vision of the Ministry of Health Maternity Action Plan towards women experiencing pregnancy and motherhood as normal events with confidence in their ability to give birth. The study showed that there were many factors contributing to the centre’s success which included its ‘homely’ feel, the confidence mothers were given and a clear vision.

Builder Rob Dunne says the Warkworth Birthing Centre extension project was not without its challenges. “Babies don’t ask us if it’s a convenient time to be born so we were all conscious of the fact that we were working around a centre that operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week,” he says. “The staff have been incredible and it’s been easy to work with the directors and Trust because they have streamlined decisionmaking processes. “All bar one of the contractors is local and it’s worth mentioning that they all gave big discounts on goods


and services. I think we all felt it was great to be contributing to such a worthwhile community project.” Rob, who has had a working relationship with the centre dating back to 2002, says the site safety management programme was especially rigorous, given that the work was happening around new mothers and babies. Among the contractors on the job was builder Gerald North, whose nineyear-old son was born at the centre and delivered by Sue Wynyard. “It’s quite neat to have that connection,” he said.


Congratulations to the Warkworth Birthing Centre on the opening of the neo-natal wing.

a woman’s eye for detail

We are proud to have been associated with the new build. WA R K W O R T H

21 Glenmore Drive, Warkworth t: 09 422 2275 e:

It was fantastic to be able to be a part of extending this wonderful facility and seeing how special the team are that make it unique. Phone Antoinette 021 637659 References available

Mahurangimatters 19 September 2012 | 21 WARKWORTH BIRTHING CENTRE EXPANSION

delivering t he best

Clive Wood

Brick & Blocklaying Ltd

A birth facility to be proud of

Proud to be part of the construction team for the extension at Warkworth Birthing Centre

Message from Warkworth Birthing Centre Community Trust chairman David Little. The Warkworth Birthing Centre has come a long way since opening 12 years ago, providing a professional facility for hundreds of families in picturesque surroundings. However, for some time, it has been obvious that there was a need to expand to cater for increasing demand. With our proximity to Auckland, the population will continue to grow at a steady rate and already there are times when requests have had to be declined. With this in mind, the trustees set about a staged extension and there is a real sense of achievement at the completion of the brand new, modern wing comprising six postnatal rooms and associated facilities, and we look forward to the refurbishing of an existing section. The Board of Trustees wishes to thank the many individuals, businesses and service clubs who have contributed time, cash, goods or expertise, many of whom are included in this feature. In particular, I wish to thank Rob Dunne

Mobile 027 275 1353 Phone 425 7141 For all your brick & blocklaying requirements

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David Little

Builders who have done a wonderful job of ensuring the project was on time and on budget. Finally, the centre staff are to be commended for maintaining the high level of service the centre is noted for, despite several months of disruptions while the construction work was undertaken. Warkworth now has facilities it can be proud of, which are a real asset to our community.


Derek Cuthell Owner

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Accredited Installers Quality Workmanship All Electric Work $50,000 Workmanship Warranty Free Consultation & Quotes Phone 422 3598 Mobile 021 496 358 WARKWORTH BASED

Benefits of midwife care examined Women who have one midwife caring for them during pregnancy are more likely to avoid medical interventions during labour including caesarean sections, Australian research has found. The world’s largest comparison of one-to-one midwifery care against standard public hospital care also found the one-to-one model was better for babies, reducing the need for special care after birth. The research by La Trobe University involved 2314 randomly chosen women with low-risk pregnancies.

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Congratulations to the Warkworth Birthing Centre Trust on your new extension. We are proud to have supplied and installed a quality Freeview system throughout the Centre.

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Proud to be involved with construction of the new car park at the Warkworth Birthing Centre 14 Hudson Road PO Box 476, Warkworth

Phone: 09 425 8454 Fax: 09 425 8983

Email: Web:

Delivering the best - September 19  

Warkworth Birthing Centre feature

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