Why Doctors Don't Trust Midwives to Go Solo

Sasha Brown-Worsham
6

Woman in labor
 
Midwives can get a bad rep in popular culture
, but for many who have delivered their babies with them, they are everything that an obstetrician is not -- attentive, flexible, available.

Now a bill currently in New York would allow midwives more flexibility in their practice and would no longer force them to be backed by an OB, but doctors, predictably, are not happy with this idea.

According to The New York Times:

"The obstetricians' group has argued that written agreements are needed to keep women safe. Suppose a woman is giving birth in a hospital, attended by a midwife without a practice agreement, and the woman starts to hemorrhage, Donna Montalto, executive director of the New York division of the congress of obstetricians, said Thursday.

What obstetrician who has never seen the patient, doesn't know the midwife, and happens to be at home at their son's baseball game is going to say, ‘Sure, I'll come in and take care of your patient,' Ms. Montalto said."

I find so many things wrong with that statement, I don't even know where to begin. And, in the interest of full disclosure, I will say both of my babies were caught by experienced and wonderful midwives who helped me have exactly the birth I wanted (drug-free and relaxed). Even if I had not delievered with a midwife, the fact is, they are becoming more and more the norm, both in pop culture and beyond. Some celebrities who openly said they used midwives include:

Ricki Lake:

Lake famously documented the lives of midwives in her film, The Business of Being Born. She has been very vocal about her support of midwives.

Pamela Anderson:

Hottie Ms. Anderson has said, "I gave birth at home both times, naturally, with a midwife, in water, with nothing."

Kate Winslet:

Winslet had a c-section with her first baby and so was thrilled to be able to deliver her second with a midwife. "It was an amazing feeling having Joe naturally, vaginally," Winslet said in an interview with Gotham Magazine. "Fourteen hours with no drugs at all, but then I had to have an epidural because I was so tired. I honestly thought I'd never be able to do it. It was an incredible birth. It laid all the ghosts to rest. It was really triumphant."

Cate Blanchett:

Blanchett used Zita West, the same midwife who caught Winslet's son.

Did you use a midwife?

 

Image via BusinessofBeingBorn.com

 

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