Midwife wins top award

A DEDICATED nurse from Chelmsford has won the title of Midwife of the Year after a new mother claimed she saved her life during her difficult pregnancy and birth.

A DEDICATED nurse from Chelmsford has won the title of Midwife of the Year after a new mother claimed she saved her life during her difficult pregnancy and birth.

Dawn Jacobs, who has worked in midwifery for 15 years, won the award from Practical Parenting magazine after being nominated by Maxine Guerts.

Mrs Guerts successfully gave birth to her daughter, Cathelijne, under Mrs Jacobs' expert care despite suffering from the rare and potentially life-threatening condition known as amniotic fluid embolism - where debris from the birth enters the mother's circulation and can cause respiratory failure.

Mrs Jacobs' support and care for the mother throughout the difficult time meant that both mother and daughter are now perfectly healthy despite the fact that 15% of those that survive the embolism are left with some degree of neurological damage.


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It was Mrs Jacobs' dedication and kindness towards Mrs Guerts and her family that convinced the judges of Practical Parenting magazine, who included TV presenter Fiona Phillips, that she deserved to win the Amazing People Award of Midwife of The Year.

Susie Boone, editor of Practical Parenting, said: “Dawn's quick response combined with her calm approach meant that Maxine got the medical help she needed in time to save her life and enable her to have a full recovery.

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“But more than that, Dawn continued to support Maxine over the next few weeks. It's only a very special midwife who shows such a commitment and care.”

Mrs Jacobs has herself experienced difficulties with childbirth, which have enabled her to understand and empathise with the women she cares for.

She said: “I have not had good experiences myself, so to be able to make each experience for other women the best that it can be is great.”

She has also suffered from post-natal depression, which currently affects an estimated one in ten women.

Mrs Jacobs, a community midwife at St John's Hospital in Chelmsford, has two children, Ethan, 10, and Erin, seven, who were both delivered by caesarean section.

Jacinta Freeman, head of midwifery in Chelmsford, said: “We are delighted that Dawn's professionalism and hard work has been recognised by this award. It is a great morale booster for both Dawn and her colleagues and we are all very proud.”

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