Midwife

Midwives support pregnant women and their babies before, during and after, childbirth.

Average salary (a year)

£24,214 Starter

to

£43,772 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

35 to 40 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends / bank holidays on shifts

How to become a midwife

You can get into this job through:

  • a university degree
  • an apprenticeship
  • a specialist course run by a professional body

University

You can do a degree in midwifery, approved by the Nursing & Midwifery Council.

Full-time courses take 3 years.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English, maths and science
  • 2 or 3 A levels, including a science, or a level 3 diploma or access to higher education in health, science or nursing

More information

Apprenticeship

You can do a midwife degree apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a degree apprenticeship

More information

Other routes

If you're a registered adult nurse you may be able to qualify through a conversion course. These usually take between 18 and 24 months.

More information

Registration

Career tips

Previous paid or unpaid experience of working in a caring role would be useful. You could contact the voluntary services co-ordinator or manager at your local NHS trust for further advice about opportunities.

Further information

You can find more on how to become a midwife from the Royal College of Midwives and Health Careers.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of medicine and dentistry
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • knowledge of psychology
  • customer service skills
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • counselling skills including active listening and a non-judgemental approach
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

Restrictions and requirements

You'll need to:

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

In this role you could be:

  • giving pregnant women advice on issues like healthy eating
  • explaining options like giving birth in hospital or at home
  • running classes about pregnancy (antenatal) and parenting
  • checking the health of mother and baby during pregnancy
  • checking progress when labour starts
  • monitoring the baby during labour
  • giving pain relief or advising on ways to manage pain
  • delivering the baby
  • calling a doctor if you notice any problems
After the baby's born, you'll:
  • give advice to families on caring for their baby
  • visit people's homes to check on mother and baby

Working environment

You could work at a client's home, at a health centre, at a GP practice or in an NHS or private hospital.

Your working environment may be physically and emotionally demanding.

You may need to wear a uniform.

Career path and progression

You must renew your Nursing & Midwifery Council registration every 3 years to show you're keeping your skills up to date.

You could take further training to specialise in areas like ultrasound or neonatal care.

With experience, you could become a ward manager or team leader.

You could also train to become a health visitor, a director of midwifery or midwifery consultant.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a midwife right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Are you interested in becoming a midwife?

Search for training courses near you.

JobsIn the United Kingdom

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