Independent Barkingside midwife protests against government changes to ‘protect women’s choice’

PUBLISHED: 13:57 26 March 2013 | UPDATED: 13:58 26 March 2013

Barkingside midwife Mal Soomessur (front centre) at the protest in London.

Barkingside midwife Mal Soomessur (front centre) at the protest in London.


An independent Barkingside midwife marched with hundreds of colleagues yesterday to protest against government changes that could threaten her life’s work.

Barkingside midwife Mal Soomessur was at the protest in London.Barkingside midwife Mal Soomessur was at the protest in London.

Mal Soomessur, of Hamilton Avenue, has been a midwife for 35 years.

She worked at Whipps Cross University Hospital, in Leytonstone until 2003.

Now, she works from people’s homes to deliver babies across east London.

Mal said: “I just wanted to work to the way women wanted and give them one-on-one care.

“They want to know the midwife all the way through, they want to trust the people and they want someone who’s always available.

“The NHS work really hard but these women want something different.”

She marched to the Department of Health with Independent Midwives UK against changes to insurance she believes will force people out of independent midwifery.

From October this year, it will be illegal for independent midwives to practice without insurance.

But the group says current packages are too expensive for individual midwives and is demanding government help.

People employed by the NHS are covered through their trust.

Mal said: “Everybody has a choice now but the choice for women will be taken away if there are no more independent midwives.”

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