Lay Midwife

Deliver babies outside of a hospital.
picture of Lay Midwife

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$24,000 – $95,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Lay Midwives do?

In the movies, the mother experiences a few moments of discomfort and she’s rewarded with a shiny, healthy baby who cries majestically. In reality, labor can stretch on for hours, and the mother can experience a significant amount of pain and discomfort. While a Doctor might treat that pain with drugs, a Lay Midwife relies on training and experience in alternative medicine to ease the discomfort.

When you’re a Lay Midwife, you meet with your patients and discuss the birth long before the babies are born. Some moms have firm ideas about where they want to have their babies and what methods they want you to use. Others allow a Lay Midwife to make suggestions based on their health and living situation. Throughout the pregnancy, you check in with each mom to confirm her plans.

As soon as labor begins, you arrive on the scene to start work. You provide massages, baths, and breathing exercises. You also let the mom lean on your shoulders as she walks around and performs stretches.

Giving your patient food can help her feel comfortable, and you sometimes add beneficial herbs. When the baby is born, you cut the umbilical cord and clean the baby for the happy parents.

Since Lay Midwives don’t hold a formal license to practice, you can’t give your patients medications or formal treatments. If your patient begins to experience signs of difficulty, you must call a Doctor or Emergency Medical Technician to provide lifesaving support. If she’s whisked to the hospital, you ride along and continue to provide needed support and comfort.

Should I be a Lay Midwife?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Helpful: You always keep an eye out for what other people need.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.

  • How to become a Lay Midwife

    We recommend at least a Bachelor's degree. Check out these schools offering Lay Midwife-related education!
    Schools close to

    Careers Similar to Lay Midwife