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Parent choice and birth planning at Murdoch

20 August 2021 Blog
Making informed choices during your birth is important. Murdoch's Manager of Midwifery Services, Sue Bradshaw, discusses choice, birth plans and how our team will support you throughout your journey.

Selecting to birth your baby at Murdoch with an accredited Obstetrician means that you have many choices when it comes to your birthing experience and stay at Hospital. We understand that giving birth is a very personal experience and we want the best outcome for both you and your baby.

Birth plans:

Birth plans are a great way to start to think about what sort of birth you want to have and discover what options are available to you. There is no shortage of information out there, but your safety and that of your baby is our first priority.

Any birth plan must be discuss with obstetrician first, so they can ensure your safety and help you navigate what is realistic and reasonable, including contingencies. Please don’t arrive to hospital with a birth plan your doctor has not discussed with you. As you usually won’t see midwives before arriving at hospital (with the exception of our parent education classes), make sure you print a couple of copies for our hospital team to refer to and discuss with you.

About the birthing process:

Throughout your pregnancy, your baby is growing and developing and your body is feeding your baby and preparing for birth.

Your uterus maintains the pregnancy by keeping your cervix closed then as birth is imminent it contracts, and the cervix opens to enable the birth of your baby. The Placenta needs to stay out of the way during birth then separate and be expelled. All this occurs in synchronised motion to ensure the baby is welcomed in a new world.


Sometimes things don’t go according to plan and there may be many clinical reasons why birth cannot occur vaginally. Caesarean section is the alternative birth method.

Both vaginal and C-section methods of birth have risks and complications to mother or baby can occur. Your Obstetrician will guide you around the decision of caesarean section or vaginal birth and if there are any conditions existing which may prevent the normal birth process.

Elective caesarean and induction

Some patients elect a caesarean birth for many reasons. This can include maternal choice, age, past birth complications or trauma or for many other clinical reasons.

At Murdoch, both our midwife team and obstetricians encourage patients to be involved in their healthcare decisions and we work with you when contingencies are required.  Planned induction is another option for birth that may be discussed with your Obstetrician.


VBAC is the common term for ‘vaginal birth after caesarean’. We have excellent data to show that many Murdoch patients have been successful at having a VBAC in our hospital. Please let your obstetrician know if a VBAC is your goal and be prepared to discuss your plans to help make this happen.


Your birth experience is one you’ll remember forever. Our Obstetricians and midwives will support you in your choices whether than may be a vaginal birth, induction or a caesarean and will work with you to ensure the best and safest outcome for your new family.


Fun facts!

  • The age of delivering women in Australia has increased from 30.1 in 2013 to 30.8 in 2020.
  • The age of delivering women at Murdoch is slightly older than average, from 32.4 in 2013 to 33.2 in 2020.
Sue Bradshaw - Midwife

Sue Bradshaw is the Midwifery Services Manager at St John of God Murdoch Hospital and has more than 30 years’ experience as a nurse and midwife. She is an accredited lactation consultant and has a Post Graduate Diploma in Business Administration.