Trying to decide who will care for you during your pregnancy and the birth
of your baby? While obstetrician-gynecologists remain the go-to professionals
for pregnancy care and delivery in the United States, midwives are growing
in popularity. In fact, nearly 1 in 10 births today are attended by a
midwife. But is a midwife right for you?
Foothills Community Midwives recently hosted a panel discussion on midwifery care. Here are questions
the midwives addressed:
What is a Midwife? And, What Does a Midwife Do?
A midwife is a trained health care professional who offers personalized
care with every aspect of pregnancy, from prenatal care to delivery.
Although it’s less commonly known, a midwife also provides care for
just about all women’s health needs, including gynecological exams,
well woman exams, general health checkups and testing, family planning
and adolescent gynecology.
What is Their Training?
Midwives can have different levels of training:
- Certified nurse midwives (CNMs) are licensed registered nurses with graduate
education in midwifery. They can practice in all 50 states.
- Certified midwives (CMS) are non-nurse midwives with a bachelor's degree
or higher in a health field, have completed an accredited midwifery education
program and have passed a national exam. Only a few states permit CMs
- Certified professional midwives (CPMs) are non-nurse midwives who have
training and clinical experience in childbirth and have passed a national
exam. Not all states permit CPMs to practice.
All midwives who practice at Foothills Community Midwives are CNMs.
What is the Midwifery Model of Care for Childbirth?
Because midwives view pregnancy, labor and childbirth as a natural process
– rather than a medical condition – midwives are strong supporters
of empowering moms throughout this important and highly personal journey.
The model of care is more of a shared decision-making model, with the
midwife educating and supporting you both emotionally and physically.
During labor, a midwife will assist you in delivering your baby as naturally
as possible, offering comfort and support with stress-relieving holistic
therapies and hands-on adjustments. You will receive very little medical
intervention if labor is progressing normally.
Why You Might Want to Choose a Midwife for Childbirth?
Not all women are good candidates for midwifery care. You may want to
consider working with a midwife if:
- You wish childbirth to be as natural as possible and aim to receive very
little medical intervention when labor is progressing normally.
- You have had no major complications during pregnancy. The conventional
OB-GYN route is best for those with high-risk pregnancies.
Where Do Midwives Deliver Babies?
Midwives deliver babies at birthing centers or at home, but most can also
deliver babies in a hospital.
Foothills Community Midwives deliver babies at Foothills Hospital’s
Family Birth Center, offering the comfort and safety of a hospital setting.
How Does a Midwife Work With Other Health Care Professionals?
Midwives often have relationships with OB-GYNs who can provide consultation
Foothills Community Midwives has a close, collaborative relationship with
the obstetricians at
Boulder Women’s Care, who are available 24/7 if any midwife patient develops a serious medical
concern during pregnancy or labor and delivery. In addition, a uniquely
Special Care Nursery is located within Foothill Hospital's Family Birth Center should extra
medical care for your baby is required.
To make an appointment with a health care provider at
Foothills Community Midwives, call (303) 415-4045.
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