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Amity Reed became a midwife to serve women, but the reality of working in over-stretched and underfunded NHS maternity services soon shattered her illusions. She's not alone - for every 30 midwives that train, 29 will leave the profession. Overdue is both the devastating personal story behind the statistics, and a call for change in the NHS. Real-life stories capture the moments at the heart of midwifery: life, death, birth, tragedy and joy, and are embedded in a clear-sighted examination of what is working and what isn't in maternity services.
The result is a book that asks - and tries to answer - questions that are at the heart of many people's working lives: how can we follow our calling, provide for our families and keep ourselves healthy, if the workplace and its systems are working against us?
'I felt goose bumps, I smiled, I shed tears. Amity Reed's descriptions of childbirth and motherhood are the most powerful I have ever read... a masterpiece of joy and trauma that provides a vivid and realistic insight into today's maternity services.'
Sheena Byrom OBE, midwife and author of Catching Babies