While we don’t normally publish consecutive posts on the same topic we thought today’s post warranted release. We are committed to increasing international awareness of the issues and controversies in birth care protocols, advances in birth policy legislation, best practices and alternative options available to mothers. To that end I recently authored a paper for submission to the international database resource available for the summit on Respecting Childbirth. The summit took place in France during our Mother’s Day week event, the week of May 11, 2009. We are all pleased to announce the paper was accepted for their database and some light is being shed on the truth of the state of maternity care in the USA. It is our desire to raise awareness internationally that although America spends a lot of money on technology it does not mean that all American technology is to be accepted on face value as being beneficial. The link to the summit (above) will bring you to the link on the paper, Home Birth: The Gold Standard of Cesarean Prevention or you may click the title link to download the paper and distribute it in your community, to your legislators as you move forward protecting your birth options where you live. The first link in this post will also provide you with a tri-fold brochure you may wish to distribute by email or hard copy to your state’s legislators as well.
June 4, 2009
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September 6, 2008
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The appeal to the September 7, 2007 Cease & Desist decision (see our earlier post this blog) will be heard in New Britain Superior Court on Monday, September 17, 2008 at 2:00 p.m..
In this environment we are again denied public input. That is why mothers, daughters, nieces, friends, we must continue to affect public opinion through the legislative sessions and, hopefully, a court who will base its decision on precedent and case law, not bias. The nation was riveted to the case of a 16-year old boy fighting for the right to choose his own cancer care but considers a woman’s right to give birth in a setting proven safer than a setting where interventions are routine “controversial.”
Support your right to give birth where you feel you are physically, mentally and emotionally safe for our own health and for that of our soon to be born babies. That right includes the option to give birth in a hospital. Supporting the right for full access in order to make your own choice means allowing for both medically managed and whole health birth.
The proponents for hospital birth are pushing to restrict your federally protected right (as noted in the article referenced above) to choose your health care by persuading the public that homebirth is dangerous. They are protecting their industry by striking your achilles heel: the safety of your baby.
Even if you don’t understand homebirth right now you can understand the right to educate yourself and make your own choice.
Please tell the courts the Medical Examining Board is biased in their action and please help us remind them it has already been decided in the state of Connecticut that midwifery is not the practice of medicine. Tell the MEB to stop their witch hunt.
Please support the right of birthing families to make educated choices about the births of their children.
*September 17, 2008 @ 2:00 PM*
* New Britain Superior Court*
* 20 Franklin Square*
* New Britain, CT 06501*
June 7, 2008
The cause of rising malpractice insurance for obstetricians is NOT that birth is risky. It’s that the medical model for birth care, also known as managed birth, is dangerous. We are not a nation of women and babies who need saving from labor. According to ACOG’s greatest supporter, Dr. Amy’s latest responses on who deserves to decide who is licensed to be a midwife in America, she considers anything less than a medical model midwife ~ highly managed by an obstetrician ~ a “second class” of midwife.
Let’s consider this: the average American believes primitive homes with dirt floors are unsanitary places to give birth, a clean source of water is vital for our health for consumption and bathing, a nation ought to have good farmland for producing healthy foods organic or otherwise, a nation ought to have cutting edge physician care options and everyone has the right to a free public education to the high school level.
If we are a nation of women for whom the majority live in clean homes with clean drinking water, are able to purchase nutritious foods and supplement with container gardening if not a full garden, are educated to a high school level minimum then why does America’s infant mortality rate rank only 0.19% better than Croatia? The American government is spending millions on health care and technology aimed at the minority and lower income population to close the disparity in maternal outcomes. American health insurance companies spend millions reimbursing for ultrasounds, screenings and diagnostic tests for genetic counseling and detecting babies with anomalies while they are in utero.
Setting aside some of the possible causes for the disparities in the IMR (i.e. nations that allow for abortion, nations which use a different cut-off date for considering a death to fall under the Infant Mortality category, etc.) we still have what it takes to rank higher as a nation of healthy mothers and infants. If our government truly wishes to rest on its laurels for providing what our citizens need for whole, physical health then, yes, our country is poised for what Dr. Amy considers a “second class of midwives.”
Our country should be strong and proud to say we are a nation of healthy, low risk mothers and we have earned the right to be the first to recognize that non-intervention trained women may serve these mothers, and these non-intervention trained women are intelligent and can recognize through simple measures how to recognize the mother who must be transferred over to a next level of clinical care. That level of care can be the CNM who is the expert in navigating the halls of medical protocol and hospital policies in addition to the CNM having the board certification to enact ‘medicine.’ The next level after that should be the medical specialist who also has surgical skills.
Our front line for our nation of healthy women preparing to give birth should be the midwife who is the expert in normal birth as well as the expert regarding her community and its affect on the mothers seeking her birth expertise. She can be the dialogue bridge between the medical experts who are willing and available to provide specialized services and the woman who truly needs them.
When choosing [representatives] for your committee, please include midwives who still do 70% of the births in the world and are experts not only at ‘normal’ birth but at keeping infants normal around the birthing process. ~ MacDorman and Singh, 1998
Were it not for the 1% of women in America who continue to choose homebirth with normal birth experts, the public would never have access to experiencing normal birth and using spontaneous, vaginal birth over an intact perineum as the gold standard for which to measure all birth policy.
I sometimes wonder why [we bother compiling statistics on midwives], since their statistics are so much better than everyone else’s. ~ Rebecca Watson, New Mexico Department of Health