Scopes of Practice > Midwives

Scope of Practice from Individual Acts

The practice of midwifery is the assessment and monitoring of women during pregnancy, labour and the post-partum period and of their newborn babies, the provision of care during normal pregnancy, labour and post-partum period and the conducting of spontaneous normal vaginal deliveries.

Alternate / Additional Description of Scope

Midwives are registered health care professionals who are qualified to provide all your primary health care during the pregnancy, labour, and birth. Primary health care includes all the necessary tests, examinations, checkā€ups, support, and referrals that you may require.


A midwife is a person who, having been regularly admitted to a midwifery educational programme, duly recognised in the country in which it is located, has successfully completed the prescribed course of studies in midwifery and has acquired the requisite qualifications to be registered and/or legally licensed to practise midwifery.


The midwife is recognised as a responsible and accountable professional who works in partnership with women to give the necessary support, care and advice during pregnancy, labour and the postpartum period, to conduct births on the midwife's own responsibility and to provide care for the newborn and the infant. This care includes preventative measures, the promotion of normal birth, the detection of complications in mother and child, the accessing of medical care or other appropriate assistance and the carrying out of emergency measures.


The midwife has an important task in health counselling and education, not only for the woman, but also within the family and the community. This work should involve antenatal education and preparation for parenthood and may extend to women's health, sexual or reproductive health and child care.


A midwife may practise in any setting including the home, community, hospitals, clinics or health units.


- Adopted by the International Confederation of Midwives Council meeting, July 19th 2005, Brisbane, Australia

Summarized Controlled Acts

Administering a substance by injection or inhalation (partial)

Managing labour or conducting the delivery of a baby (partial)

Performing a procedure on tissue below the dermis (partial)

Prescribing, dispensing, selling or compounding a drug (partial)

Putting an instrument, hand or finger, into natural or artificial body openings (partial)



Authorized Acts

4. In the course of engaging in the practice of midwifery, a member is authorized, subject to the terms, conditions and limitations imposed on his or her certificate of registration, to perform the following:

1. Communicating a diagnosis identifying, as the cause of a woman’s or newborn’s symptoms, a disease or disorder that may be identified from the results of a laboratory or other test or investigation that a member is authorized to order or perform on a woman or a newborn during normal pregnancy, labour and delivery and for up to six weeks post-partum.

2. Managing labour and conducting spontaneous normal vaginal deliveries.

3. Inserting urinary catheters into women.

4. Performing episiotomies and amniotomies and repairing episiotomies and lacerations, not involving the anus, anal sphincter, rectum, urethra and periurethral area.

5. Administering, by injection or inhalation, a substance designated in the regulations.

6. Prescribing drugs designated in the regulations.

7. Putting an instrument, hand or finger beyond the labia majora or anal verge during pregnancy, labour and the post-partum period.

8. Administering suppository drugs designated in the regulations beyond the anal verge during pregnancy, labour and the post-partum period.

9. Taking blood samples from newborns by skin pricking or from persons from veins or by skin pricking.

10. Intubation beyond the larynx of a newborn.

11. Administering a substance by injection or inhalation as provided for in subsection 4.1 (2). 2009, c. 26, s. 16 (1).

Additional requirements for authorized acts

4.1(1) A member is not authorized to perform a procedure under paragraph 10 of section 4 unless the member performs the act in accordance with the regulations. 2009, c. 26, s. 16 (1).


    (2)A member is not authorized to perform a procedure under paragraph 11 of section 4 unless the procedure is ordered by a member of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario. 2009, c. 26, s. 16 (1).