Statistics of independent midwives in Switzerland
The Swiss Federation of Midwives (SHV/FSSF) records the activities and services of independent midwives throughout Switzerland. This data is used for quality assurance and is evaluated annually using descriptive statistics and published in an extensive report and/or a flyer. In 2009, this task was given to the Research Unit for Midwifery Science at Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW).
In Switzerland, independent midwives care for women and families during pregnancy, labour and birth, the postpartum period and breastfeeding. In the context of the service contract between the Swiss Federation of Midwives and santésuisse, the association of Swiss health insurance companies, the activities and services of independent midwives have been recorded throughout Switzerland since 2005. Therefore, data concerning the services of independent midwives as well as socio-demographic and perinatal information of all women cared for by midwives are collected. For the 2018 data collection, data was for the first time available in a completely new format due to new electronic invoicing and documentation programs leading to a reorientation of data collection. This meant new opportunities for data analysis, which were now possible not only at the level of the women themselves but also for check-ups and visits. The changes also brought relief to midwives, who no longer had to enter data using several different data collection tools. In October 2019, the results of the 2018 data collection were published in a flyer. The data for 2019 are due to be transferred in early 2020. ZHAW’s contractual relationship with the Swiss Federation of Midwives is renewed annually and is currently valid until the end of 2020.
Data collection and analysis of the activities and services of independent midwives is used for quality assurance. A report with a selection of descriptive results and/or a flyer with the most important findings is published annually to inform interested people about the services of independent midwives during pregnancy, labour and birth, the postpartum period and breastfeeding as well as about the sociodemographic and perinatal characteristics of the women and children who were seen by them.
The annually published study consists of:
- Comprehensive data collection
- Data collection by electronic invoicing and documentation systems and data transfer to the Research Unit for Midwifery Science at ZHAW
- Descriptive analysis of complex, hierarchical data
- Comparison with previous years and between study groups
- Annual report and/or flyer in German and French