I’m Maria a midwife from the UK and came into NZ in June. It took me about 13 months including 5 months of prep before I had enough post qualifying experience, and 12 weeks stuck at my parents during lockdown.
The easiest part of the process was speaking to Kristin at Accent to get a handle on the process and then getting and succeeding at the interview. The most challenging part was getting on the midwifery register although I used my 5 months prep time to get a lot of that in place.
My first impressions of New Zealand reminds me of Teletubbyland because it looks so perfect with its green countryside. We had visited a couple times before the actual move and loved it. The best parts of NZ are the people, the attitudes, wildlife, countryside, rugby, the Covid response, and how easy and organized isolation was for us.
I don’t miss much apart from friends and family, oh and some reasonably priced good cheese, but we come from Somerset the home of Cheddar!
My advice for immigrating to NZ is, just do it. What’s the worst that can happen? If you don’t like it, go home. You may have used a bit of money but it’s not wasted because you’ve given your dream a go and it just hasn’t worked out but you won’t die wishing you tried.
We chose to settle in Hawkes Bay because of the sunshine and wine and we haven’t been disappointed. There is so much to do out and about and although we don’t have young children there is so much for families to do. There is loads going on even though you’re not in one of the big cities (not what we wanted). We’ve already had a short road trip before I started work, we’re off to the rugby for the second time tonight, 2 gigs down and another one booked, a cider festival (it’s another Somerset thing) and this weekend we’re off out on the Hawkes Bay bike trails on our new bikes.
There are huge differences between midwifery here and at home due to the continuity of carer system with Lead Midwifery Carer (LMC) midwives. Women can choose their independent midwife who will provide care antenatally, during labour and postnatally but the big difference is that they are paid by the government. So negotiating that relationship as a health board midwife takes some getting used to. Just do your research and come out to get some experience if you can before you make a decision.
The similarities that have helped me orientate is women becoming Mums is special the world over. Being with women as a midwife is the same in NZ but some of the processes are just a bit different. As above with the LMC role which is better for women and better for midwives because of the relationships that can be built.