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On-the-spot France

Rare male midwife warns profession in France at risk

Audio 04:10
Midwife Nicolas Dutriaux holds a model of a pelvis he uses to explain things to his patients.
Midwife Nicolas Dutriaux holds a model of a pelvis he uses to explain things to his patients. Sarah Elzas/RFI

When looking at professions in France dominated by one gender or another, a statistic jumps out: two per cent. Fewer than two per cent of construction workers are women. And on the flip side, fewer than two percent of midwives are men. Midwives care for women during pregnancy and birth, and in France they can also prescribe birth control and gynecologiclal health care. French midwives train for five years, and are present at each hospital birth. But they do not have the same status as obstetricians or gynecologists. We meet one of the rare men in this field, who says the gender balance of his profession has lead to its marginalisation.

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