Posters at a Bay Area Rally to Improve Birth
Bay Area Rally to Improve Birth, 2013 / Photo: Wendy Kenin (cc)

Choices in Childbirth Statement

Our Bodies Ourselves produced this statement in collaboration with physicians, midwives and women’s health advocates who support safe choices in childbirth. Choices in Childbirth has been used, and will continue to be used, to show support for evidence-based birth models as relevant policy issues are debated in legislatures and court houses around the country.

We invite maternity care providers, public health professionals and childbirth advocates to become signatories. To do so, please use the submission form at the bottom of this page.


We are physicians, midwives, women’s health advocates, and educators concerned about preserving safe choices in childbirth that respect the diversity of women’s needs. We urge the following:

1. Preserve the option of vaginal births after cesarean (VBACs).

Substantial evidence points to the safety of this choice for most women. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) still recommends that VBACs be offered only when an anesthesiologist and surgeon are in the hospital throughout labor, a requirement that is not feasible for most community hospitals. This position has served to eliminate VBAC as an option in many hospitals across the country, even where anesthesiologists and surgeons are minutes away if not in house. We urge ACOG to revise this position.

The American Academy of Family Practice recommends “a management plan for uterine rupture and other potential emergencies requiring rapid cesarean section,” and the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada recommends that women give birth in a hospital where a timely cesarean section is available. This approach allows mothers and their providers to make a choice regarding a VBAC based on their specific situation. External constraints on VBACs based on inadequate data have no place in maternity care.

While the media often examines childbirth choices, there has been fairly limited recognition of the principle of a woman’s right to choose a VBAC. Little is said about the ethics of forcing women to undergo major abdominal surgery when they are not able to find a hospital where they have the opportunity to attempt a VBAC. Liability concerns are often cited as a major reason for diminishing VBAC options, but little is said about the increased risks of surgical childbirth to a woman, her baby, and her subsequent babies.

2. Make options available for hospital-based midwifery care, utIlizing Certified Nurse Midwives and Certified Midwives, in all communities.

Around the world, midwives provide excellent care to women and babies. The track record of U.S. hospital-based midwives has been outstanding. Women who have access to such midwifery care evaluate it in the very highest terms, yet many institutions have paid little attention to either establishing or expanding midwifery services.

In the past few years, the demand for midwifery services has increased and the proportion of hospital births attended by midwives has also increased in many areas. Government policies that support midwifery education and recognize midwives as a more central element in the perinatal workforce will be essential as we look ahead to establishing an adequate number of well-trained maternity caregivers in the United States.

3. Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs) should be licensed and regulated in order to make the option of homebirth as safe as possible.

Only a small minority of women in the United States — fewer than 1 percent — chooses homebirth, but this number, while small, is growing. Evidence from the United States and abroad illustrates that with a trained birth attendant and appropriate support, this is a safe choice for uncomplicated pregnancies.

There are advantages and disadvantages for low-risk women attached to each potential setting for childbirth, whether it is the hospital, free-standing birth center, or home. Women who want to give birth at home or in free-standing birth centers will be best served by a system that offers oversight to the skills and protocols followed by out-of-hospital caregivers.

One means of making the homebirth option safer is to establish licensure in all 50 states for Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs), whose certification specifically requires skills and experience in out-of-hospital births. In addition, states and third-party insurers that currently impose financial or regulatory limitations on Certified Nurse-Midwives (CNMs) or Certified Midwives who wish to practice in either free-standing birth centers or the home setting, or on the physicians who collaborate with them, should reverse such policies. Equitable payment by Medicare, Medicaid and other insurers for services provided by midwives is also essential.

A number of states now seek to license and regulate CPMs. More than half of all states currently license or otherwise recognize direct-entry midwives in some fashion. No state has ever reversed its decision to do so.

4. Medical organizations should place greater priority on preventing pre-term and low birth-weight births.

The media attention given to the homebirth controversy often eclipses other, more pressing concerns about obstetric care and outcomes. For example, there are still too many pre-term and low-weight births (though the numbers are finally starting to drop), in part the result of unnecessary inductions and pre-scheduled cesarean deliveries. Medical organizations such as the AMA and ACOG should refocus efforts to place greater priority on the pre-term and low birth-weight problem, especially iatrogenic prematurity caused by inductions and planned cesarean section.

Policy makers should also turn to model projects like the extraordinary example of the Community of Hope Family Health and Birth Center, located in one of the poorest areas of Washington, D.C., where prematurity rates have been halved utilizing the Certified Nurse-Midwife in a coordinated system of care with collaborating obstetrical specialists. We need to create more choices in childbirth that produce optimal outcomes along with safe and satisfying birthing experiences.

Conclusion

We urge the promotion of public policies that draw from the best available evidence in the maternity care field. Best practices in maternity care are described in “Evidence-Based Maternity Care: What It Is and What It Can Achieve,” an excellent report co-published by the Childbirth Connection, the Milbank Memorial Fund, and the Reforming States Group.

We look forward to a more productive dialogue on these issues. We encourage the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the American Medical Association to strike those resolutions that deny childbearing women the autonomy and rights that medical professionals, educators, and women’s health advocates have historically endorsed. It is time to create a system that allows women all reasonable choices in childbirth and to encourage practices that produce optimal outcomes for both mothers and babies.

Signatories

Leah Albers, CNM, DrPH, professor, College of Nursing and Dept. Obstetrics & Gynecology, School of Medicine, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center (Albuquerque, N.M.)

Elizabeth Allemann, MD, medical director, Columbia Community Birth Center, and founder, Physicians for Missouri Midwives (Columbia, Mo.)
Jennifer Block, author and journalist (Brooklyn, N.Y.)

Ida Darragh, CPM, chair, North American Registry of Midwives (Little Rock, Ark.)

Eugene Declercq, PhD, professor of maternal and child health, Boston University School of Public Health (Boston, Mass.)

Neal F. Devitt, MD, senior physician, La Familia Medical Center (Santa Fe, N.M.)

Cynthia Flynn, CNM, PhD, associate professor, College of Nursing, Seattle University, and president, American Association of Birth Centers (Seattle, Wash.)

Daniel M. Fox, president emeritus, Milbank Memorial Fund (New York, N.Y.)

Marjorie Greenfield, MD, associate professor, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine (Cleveland, Ohio)

Daniel Grossman, MD, FACOG, senior associate, Ibis Reproductive Health; and clinical instructor, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, UCSF (San Francisco, Calif.)

Eleanor Hinton Hoytt, president and CEO, Black Women’s Health Imperative (Washington, D.C.)

Susan Hodges, president, Citizens for Midwifery (Athens, Ga.)

Tanja Johnson, MSN, ARNP, CNM (Orlando, Fla.)

Tekoa King, CNM, MPH, associate professor, Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, University of California, San Francisco (San Francisco, Calif.)

Valerie King, MD, MPH, FAAFP, associate professor, Department of Family Medicine, Oregon Health & Science University (Portland, Ore.)

Michael C. Klein, MD, CCFP, FAAP (Neonatal-Perinatal), FCFP, ABFP, emeritus professor of family practice and pediatrics, University of British Columbia & BC Children’s & Women’s Health Centre (Vancouver, Canada)

Mary Lawlor, CPM, LM, MA, president, National Association of Certified Professional Midwives (Putney, Vt.)

Lawrence Leeman, MD, MPH, associate professor of family and community medicine, associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology, University of New Mexico (Albuquerque, N.M.)

Michael C. Lu, MD, MPH, associate professor of obstetrics, gynecology and public health, UCLA (Los Angeles, Calif.)

Charles Mahan, MD, FACOG, professor emeritus, Department of Community and Family Health, College of Public Health, University of South Florida (Tampa, Fla.)

Shafia M. Monroe, CM, President, International Center for Traditional Childbearing (ICTC) (Portland, Ore.)

Sister Angela Murdaugh, CNM, MSN, FACNM, past president of the American College of Nurse-Midwives and Consortium of Texas Certified Nurse-Midwives (Weslaco, Texas)

Judy Norsigian, executive director, Our Bodies Ourselves (Boston, Mass.)

Kristen Ostrem, CNM, MSN, chapter chair, on behalf of members of the New Mexico Chapter of the American College of Nurse-Midwives (Albuquerque, N.M.)

Debra Pascali-Bonaro, women’s health advocate and filmmaker (River Vale, N.J.)

Cynthia Pearson, executive director, National Women’s Health Network (Washington, D.C.)

Lauren Plante, MD, MPH, FACOG, associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology, Thomas Jefferson University (Philadelphia, Pa.)

Marcie Richardson, MD, FACOG, Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates, Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital (Boston, Mass.)

Gary A. Richwald, MD, MPH, health policy analyst and consultant, American Social Health Association (Los Angeles, Calif.)

Judith Rooks, CNM, MS, MPH, midwife and epidemiologist (Portland, Ore.)

Kenneth Rosenberg, MD, MPH, maternal and child health epidemiologist (Portland, Ore.)

Sara G. Shields, MD, MS, FAAFP, clinical associate professor of family medicine and community health, University of Massachusetts, Family Health Center of Worcester (Worcester, Mass.)

Geradine Simkins, DEM, CNM, MSN, president, Midwives Alliance of North America (Maple City, Mich.)

Laura N. Sinai, MD, MSCE, FAAP, North Carolina state breastfeeding coordinator for the American Academy of Pediatrics (Charlotte, N.C.)

Naomi Stotland, MD, FACOG, assistant professor, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences, UCSF Medical Director, Sage Femme Midwifery Services (San Francisco, Calif.)

Pam Udy, president, International Cesarean Awareness Network (Ogden, Utah)

Cornelia Vanderziel, MD, FACOG, Harvard Vanguard Medical Associates (Cambridge, Mass.)

Abigail Wolf, MD, assistant professor, clerkship director, obstetrics and gynecology, Thomas Jefferson Medical College (Philadelphia, Pa.)

Diony Young, editor, Birth, and women’s and newborns’ health advocate (Geneseo, N.Y.)

ADDITIONAL SIGNERS

Coalition for Maternity Services (CIMS)
Lamaze International Executive Committee

Katherine Abelson, CNM (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Linda Abraham, CNM (Avondale Estates, Ga.)
Alyce Adams, RN (Rochester, N.Y.)
Fatimah Adekola, social worker and doula (Philadelphia, Pa.)
Michelle Adelewitz, RN, BSN (Ithaca, N.Y.)
Tawney Aguilar (Gilbert, Ariz.)
Tara Akins, CD (DONA) (Lakeland, Fla.)
Karen L. Allen, MS, CNM (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Jean W. Allen, college student and soon-to-be doula, (Montclair, N.J.)
Ingrid Andersson, CNM, LM, MSN (Madison, Wis.)
Rebecca Angevine Spence, MPH, women’s health advocate (Md.)
Mary Ann Nelson (Montrose, S.D.)
Holly Arends Murphy, CPM (Penobscot, Maine)
Megan Aston, PhD, RN (Halifax, NS, Canada)
Lani Axman (Laveen, Ariz.)
Marin Bach-Antonson, CD (DONA), CBE (Nyack, N.Y.)
Frances A. Bahi, PhD (Glen Cove, N.Y.)
Karen Baldwin, CNM, Ed.D. FACNM (Rhinebeck, N.Y.)
Mary Barger, CNM, MPH, associate professor, Boston University (Boston, Mass.)
Linda Barnes, CNM (Durango, Colo.)
Harriet R. Barry, BFC, MONITRICE, LCCE, FACCE (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Michelle Bartlett, CPM, legislative chair, Idaho Midwifery Council (Idaho Falls, Idaho)
Krista Bayless (Aurora, Colo.)
Kelli Beaty, CPM, LM, president, Association of Texas Midwives (Midland, Texas)
Carly Beaulieu, CD (DONA) and student of midwifery (Calgary, Alberta)
Kathryn Beck, hypnobirthing childbirth educator (New York, N.Y.)
Tanya Belcheff, CNM (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Barbara Ben-Ami, CNM, MA (Israel)
Judith Benkert, RN, CNM, FNP, MS (San Francisco, Calif.)
Christina Bennett, student nurse, birth doula, birth advocate (Tampa, Fla.)
Laura Bentz, MEd, childbirth educator, birth doula (Williamstown, Mass.)
Robyn Berman, CD (DONA), PCD (DONA) (Halifax, NS, Canada)
Christina Bermingham (Boston, Mass.)
Hannah Bernard-Donals (Madison, Wis.)
Alana Bibeau, MA, PhD, birth and postpartum doula (Warwick, R.I.)
Sabrina Bodden, training doula and training massage therapist (Madison, Wis.)
Louis Borgenicht, MD (Salt Lake City, Utah)
Kathryn Borgenicht, MD (Bozeman, Mont.)
Amy Borkowski, MSN, CNM (Menomonee Falls, Wis.)
Jamie Bourgeois, CNM, WHNP-BC (Manchester, N.H.)
Emily Bousamra, MSN, CNM (Dearborn, Mich.)
Crystal Bowden, birth doula and educator (Douglasville, Ga.)
Molli Boyd, MD, FAAP (Chicago, Ill.)
E.S. Bradley, birth doula, newborn nanny, and LPN student (Knoxville, Tenn.)
Brandy Brandfass, RN, BSN, LM, CPM (Charleston, S.C.)
Monica Brasile, certified childbirth educator and doula (Iowa City, Iowa)
Claudia Breglia, LM, CPM, president, California Association of Midwives (Sacramento, Calif.)
Rebecca Bromwich, LLB, LLM (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Wendy Brooks Barr, MD, MPH, MSCE, Institute for Family Health (New York, N.Y.)
Diane Brothers, AP, RN, BSN (Richmond, Va.)
Barbara Brown (Edinburgh, Scotland)
JoAnn Brown, postpartum doula (San Leandro, Calif.)
Joan S. Bryson, CNM, LM (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Jessica Burckhard, DC (Rhinebeck, N.Y.)
Jolee Burger, childbirth educator (Keller, Texas)
Ami Burns, CD, LCCE, FACCE, founder, Birth Talk (Chicago, Ill.)
Justine Caines, founder, What Women Want (New South Wales, Australia)
Ruth Callahan, PCD, doula care postpartum service (New York, N.Y.)
Mary Callender, birth doula, midwifery apprentice, ICAN leader (Richmond, Va.)
Jennifer Cardinale, LMT, CD, LCCE (Seaford, N.Y.)
Angela M. Carpenter, SNM, RN (Hampton, Va.)
Tamsen Carson, physician assistant with residency in women’s health (Reno, Nev.)
Martha Carter, MBA, RN, CNM (Culloden, W.V.)
Janine Carter, certified childbirth educator (Canada)
Norah Cartwright (Montgomery Village, Md.)
Brooke Casey, CPM (St. Helena, Calif.)
Lisa Cavagnolo, MSOM, Dipl. Ac (East Lansing, Mich.)
Luz Chacon, MPH, CLE (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Tammi Chaney, certified childbirth educator and birth doula (Platte, S.D.)
Judy Chapman, RN, RM (Australia)
Pat Chirumbolo, CNM (Binghamton, N.Y.)
Melissa Chios (Syosset, N.Y.)
Cindy Chok (Pelham, N.H.)
Andrea Christianson, CNM, APRN, MS, Trillium WomanCare (Memphis, Tenn.)
Sara Church, CNM (Norwalk, Conn.)
Ellen Chuse, childbirth and parenting educator (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Lennon Clark (Salem, Ore.)
Ruth Cobb, CNM, MSN, CPM (Tulsa, Okla.)
Dawn Cockrell, LM, CPM (Midland, Texas)
Cate Colburn-Smith, co-author, The Milk Memos (Boulder, Colo.)
Jill Colin, CPM (Las Vegas, Nev.)
Kim Collins, JD, CD (DONA) (South Orange, N.J.)
Nicole Collins, LMT, birth doula (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Jacqui Collins-Parker, LPN, doula, Student Midwife (Camden, N.J.)
Claudia Conn, CPM (Ga.)
Lisa Coomer, CPM (Knoxville, Tenn.)
Ursula Crane, CNM (Oakland, Calif.)
Jane Crawford Peterson, CPM, LM, president, Wisconsin Guild of Midwives (Iola, Wis.)
Karen Crisalli Winter (Seattle, Wash.)
Bob Crispen (Decatur, Ala.)
Kimberly D. Borgeson (Kennewick, Wash.)
Lisa Dalporto, CNM (Bowling Green, Ky.)
Sabina Dambrauskas, MSN, CNM (LaGrange, Ill.)
Poppy Daniels, MD, OB/GYN (Poplar Bluff, Mo.)
Rae Davies, BSH, CD(DONA), LCCE, IBCLC (Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.)
Katy Dawley, CNM, PhD, FACNM, program director, Midwifery Institute, Philadelphia University (Pa.)
Margaret Dearwester, RN, Midwifery advocate (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Heather Deatrick, International Cesarean Awareness Network (Minneapolis, Minn.)
Leah DeCesare, BS, CCE, ICPE, PCD (DONA) postpartum doula (East Greenwich, R.I.)
Ana Delgado, CNM, assistant clinical professor, UCSF (San Francisco, Calif.)
Lana DeLowe, doula (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Susan M. Derby, RN, CPM (Cato, N.Y.)
Juliet Dietsch (Ky.)
Genevra DiLorenzo, RN (N.Y.)
Abida Dini, MSW (Richmond, Va.)
Patricia Dodge, MSN, CNM (Reynoldsburg, Ohio)
Anastasia Doherty, CNM (Middleton, Wis.)
Jennifer Donelan, FNP-BC, MSN, Planned Parenthood of St. Louis (St. Louis, Mo.)
Robin Doolittle Illian, CPM (Portland, Maine)
Barbara Douglas, RN, BSN (Troy, Mich.)
Lisa Duggan, publisher, MotherHood Magazine (Short Hills, N.J.)
Jennifer Duggan, RM, CPM (Kitchener, ON, Canada)
Courtney Durfee (Middletown, N.Y.)
Lauren E. Pine Bildner, BSN, CNM (Teaneck, N.J.)
Inger Easton, physical therapist (Portland, Ore.)
Cassie Ehard, doula (DONA) (Glendale, Ariz.)
Kori Engdahl, RN, ASN, BA, SNM (Fort Wayne, Ind.)
Dana Ericson, CNM, ARNP, director, midwife and doula services (Des Moines, Iowa)
Marcia Eskridge, LMT (Anchorage, Ala.)
Megan Evans, MPH, George Washington University Medical Student (Washington, D.C.)
Roxanne K. Fall, PhD, LLP, social worker (Traverse City, Mich.)
Jennifer Fargar, chair, GA Friends of Midwives & doula (Atlanta, Ga.)
Leslie Fehan, MS, CNM, WHNP (Midlothian, Va.)
Susan Fekety, CNM, MSN (Portland, Maine)
Agnieszka Ferens, RN, childbirth educator (San Diego, Calif.)
Anne Fine, MSN, CNM, faculty, Holyoke Community College (Holyoke, Mass.)
Maureen A. Flannery, MD, MPH, assistant professor, Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of Kentucky College of Medicine (Lexington, Ky.)
Danielle Fluhr, BSW (Indianapolis, Ind.)
Cathy Forbes, ND candidate, aspiring homebirth midwife (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Jaime Lynn Fordham, RN, BS (Rochester, N.Y.)
Lois Freedman, MEd, CCE, prenatal/postpartum therapist (Boston, Mass.)
Peggy Franklin, RN, CPM (Gainesville, Va.)
Patience Gaddis (Canton, Ga.)
Jennifer Gadoua, RN, ADN, student nurse midwife (Pa.)
Elizabeth Gallo (Maplewood N.J.)
Julia Garcia (Greenfield, Calif.)
Teresa Garcia, LCSW (Bronx, N.Y.)
Daniel Garfield, DC (Florence, Mass.)
Garry Jennings, MS, CNM, BSN (Asheville, N.C.)
Lylaine Gavette, CNM, AABC Foundation Board (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Molly Germash, LM, CPM (Peaster, Texas)
Oceana Glantz, LMT, pre- and postnatal-doula (Murfreesboro, Tenn.)
Jordan Glover, PCD (DONA) (Asheville, N.C.)
Stephanie Goff, CD (DONA) (Lake Tapps, Wash.)
Meredith Goff, CNM (New Haven, Conn.)
Ingrid Gold, CNM, MHSA (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Judy Goldberger, RN (Boston, Mass.)
Erin Graham, LMT (New York, N.Y.)
Andrea Green, MEd (Ashland, Mass.)
Amy Gribbin (Oakdale, N.Y.)
Jackie Griggs, CNM, CPM, Bay Area Birth Center (Houston, Texas)
Lisa Gussack, CNM, MS, MPH, director, Full Circle women’s Health (White Plains, N.Y.)
Amy V. Haas, BCCE, Rochester Area Birth Network (Rochester, N.Y.)
Judith Halek, CCE, CD (IHBP), director, Birth Balance (New York, N.Y.)
Lyn Haley, CNM (Beckely, W.V.)
Hygeia Halfmoon (Williams, Ariz.)
Heather Hall, parent, student midwife, AAHCC-Ret. (Hesperia, Mich.)
Mary Handcock (Long Valley S.D.)
Kristine Hanke, RN (Rothschild, Wis.)
Caitlin Hanrahan, BSN/MSN candidate, University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing
Cathy Hansen (Chicago, Ill.)
Patricia Harman, CNM, MS, midwife and author, Arms Wide Open (Morgantown, W.V.)
Barbara Harper, RN, CLD, CCE, founder, Waterbirth International (Portland, Ore.)
Debra Harris, CD (DONA), PCD (DONA) (New City, N.Y.)
K. Michele Hatchell, BA, BFA (Madison, Wis.)
Leah Hatcher, CPM, LM (Madison, Wis.)
Debbie Healy, CNM, LM, private homebirth practice (Madison, Wis.)
Vicki Hedley, LM, CPM (Montvale, N.J.)
Rachel Heine, RN, SNM (Cranberry Township, Pa.)
Erin Hemmens, Midwifery Coalition of Nova Scotia (Halifax, NS, Canada)
Alisa Henning, CNM (Albuquerque, N.M.)
Jill Herendeen, ICBE (Lyons, N.Y.)
Linda Herrick, BSN, RNC, CCE, CBE, CD (DONA) CIMS Leadership Team (Ottawa, Kan.)
Marla Hicks, RN-BC (perinatal), LM, CPM (San Diego, Calif.)
Dorothy Hiersteiner, candidate, master’s in public policy (Somerville, Mass.)
Jon Holland (Asheville, N.C.)
Michelle Holshue, BS, student nurse (Philadelphia, Pa.)
Anna Hopper (Atlanta, Ga.)
Melinda Hoskins, MS, CNM, IBCLC, assistant professor, Orvis School of Nursing, University of Nevada, Reno (Nev.)
Lisa Houchins (Des Moines, Iowa)
Barbara Howe, MS, RD, IBCLC (Carson City, Nev.)
Tom Hurrle, L.Ac. (Chicago, Ill.)
Margy Hutchison, CNM (San Francisco, Calif.)
Denise Hynd, RN, RM, IBCLC, BApSc (Nsg Ed) (Auckland, New Zealand)
Marsha E. Jackson, CNM, MSN, FACNM (Alexandria, Va.)
Tiffany Jackson, CNM, MSN (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Claudia Jacobs Dunmire, CCE, doula (Stony Brook, N.Y.)
Karen Jacobsen, maternity support behavioral health specialist (Okanogan, Wash.)
Michele James-Parham, traditional lay midwife (Pittsburgh, Pa.)
Ashley Jass (Mount Dora, Fla.)
Martine Jean-Baptiste, CNM, NP, MS (New York, N.Y.)
Karen Jefferson, CM, MS, JJB Midwifery (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Susan M. Jenkins, JD, counsel, Big Push for Midwives Campaign (Washington, D.C.)
Bobbi Jo Platte, family and child development specialist (Greenville, Mich.)
Angela Johnson, facilitator, maternity/breastfeeding support group (Sioux Falls, S.D.)
Michelle F.P. Johnston, CNM, MSN, assistant clinical professor, UCSF (San Francisco, Calif.)
Deirdre Jones, licensed clergy, pastoral counselor (Harvey, Ill.)
Micky Jones, BS, CLE, CLD, CHBE, HCHI, IBCLC (Nashville, Tenn.)
Jennie Joseph LM, CPM, RM (Winter Garden, Fla.)
Nicette Jukelevics, MA, ICCE, author (Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.)
Carol Jungwirth, RN, BSN, NRP instructor (Carmel, Calif.)
Laurie Jurkiewicz, CNM, MS (San Anselmo, Calif.)
Honi Kalinowski (Richmond, Va.)
Melinda Kane, PhD, birth doula (Niskayuna, N.Y.)
Shannon Kane, RN (Buffalo, N.Y.)
Rebekah Kaplan, CNM, MSN, faculty, UCSF/SFGH (San Francisco, Calif.)
Maria Kata, MS, AAHCC (Ronkonkoma, N.Y.)
Marc J.N.C. Keirse, MD, DPhil, DPH, FRANZCOG, FRCOG, professor of obstetrics and gynecology
Flinders University (Adelaide, South Australia)
Julie A. Kellon, MSN, CNM (Wadsworth, Ohio)
Jessica Kelly-Shaieb, JD, president, BirthNetwork National (Ann Arbor, Mich.)
Holly Powell Kennedy, CNM, PhD (New Haven, Conn.)
Toni Kimpel, CPM, LM, ICCE, BS (Brenham, Texas)
Neile King LMT, editor, New York Guide to a Healthy Birth (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Pie Kirby, LM (Valley Mills, Texas)
Lindsey Kirkendall (Nashville, Tenn.)
Karisa Klemm, CD (DONA) (Torrance, CA)
Wendy Kline, PhD, associate professor of history, University of Cincinnati (Ohio)
Avital Kline, birth & postpartum doula (Vancouver, BC, Canada)
Becky Knight, MPH (Charlotte, N.C.)
Julia Knox (Portland, ME)
Lauren Korfine, PhD, birth doula, Midwifery Advocate (Ithaca, N.Y.)
Lisa Koyuki Smith, birth doula, NYC Public School Teacher (New York, N.Y.)
Barbara Kozlowski, CNM, Greenhouse Birth Center (Okemos, Mich.)
Julie Krahn (New York, N.Y.)
Eva Krannawitter Gavin, MHSA (Overland Park, Kan.)
Rachel Krauser, doula (Israel)
Christina Krutsky, CNM, MSN (Northampton, Mass.)
Lauren Kunis, DONA trained doula, RMT (New York, N.Y.)
Aszani Kunkler, director and midwife, Madison Birth Center (Middleton, Wis.)
Jacqueline Kuschner, CNM, MSNM, NP (Charlotte, N.C.)
Tristan Kwiecinski, RN (Farmington, N.M.)
Jacqueline Lamberto, MPH, CPM-in-training (Bridgton, Maine)
Ashley Larsen, certified professional doula (Glen Allen, Va.)
Gwendolyn Lattimore, MD, pediatric hospitalist (Albuquerque, N.M.)
Jamie Laudert (Minneapolis, Minn.)
Rachel Leavitt, BSN, RN, student CPM (Provo, Utah)
Susan J. Leibel, CNM, MS, MPH (San Francisco, Calif.)
Jennifer Leigh (Rochester, N.Y.)
Heather LeMaster, student midwife (San Diego, Calif.)
Kristen Leonard, CNM, MSN, homebirth midwife (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Carol Leonard, certified midwife and author, past president, MANA (Hopkinton, N.H.)
Yvonne Leung (Philadelphia, Pa.)
Jessica Levesque, doula (Lakeland, Fla.)
Amy Levi, CNM, WHNP-BC, PHD (San Francisco, Calif.)
Audrey Levine, LM, CPM (Olympia, Wash.)
Jacqueline Levine, LCCE, FACCE, CD (DONA), CLC, BA (East Rockaway, N.Y.)
Judith Lienhard, BSN, RNC (Portland, Ore.)
Jo Anne Lindberg, MEd ABT, president and founder, BirthLink Network (Illinois)
Suzanne List, RN (Riverbank, Calif.)
Connie Livingston, RN, president, Perinatal Education Associates, Inc. (Centerville, Ohio)
Kim Lopes, CNM (Charleston, W.V.)
Judith Lothian, PhD, RN, LCCE (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Kelly Lubeck, MPH (New York, N.Y.)
Leslie Lytle, MS, CMA, RYT, OmMama, LLC (Richmond, Va.)
Christine M. Novak, RNC, HNC (Green Brook, N.J.)
Victoria Macioce-Stumpf, ICCE, CD (DONA, CAPPa.), leadership team, Coalition for Improving Maternity Services (CIMS), president-elect, BirthNetwork National (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.)
Miranda Mackey, CNM, MSN (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Sarah Macrorie, DEM, surgical assistant (Eugene, Ore.)
Virginia Maddock, doula (Sydney, NSW, Australia)
Cheryl Madigan, doula and childbirth educator-in-training (Raynham, Mass.)
Nancy Madru, MA, CLD, CPD (Montgomery, Mass.)
Becky Maher, acupuncture student (Marina del Rey, Calif.)
Melissa Maimann, essential birth consulting (Australia)
Judy Major, MPH, CD (DONA) (Mars Hill, N.C.)
Michele Mamone (Asheville N.C.)
Tony Maner, retired paramedic (Ellerbe, N.C.)
Elizabeth Mangum, LCSW, CD (DONA), director, BirthFocus (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Laurian Mapp, early head start home-based program manager (Asheville, N.C.)
Kelley Maresca, women’s health advocate (Freeport, N.Y.)
Anne Margolis, CNM, NP, MSN (Suffern, N.Y.)
Alyssa Martin, CPM (Rutledge, Mo.)
Christy Martin, CPM, LM, RN (North Richland Hills, Texas)
Anita Martinez, MS, CNM (Scottsdale, Ariz.)
Catherine Mascari, RN, MSN, CNM (St. Paul, Minn.)
Jane Mashburn, CNM, MN, FACNM, clinical associate professor, Emory University (Atlanta, Ga.)
Susan E. Massey, CNM, CNP (Belleville, Ill.)
Emily Mather, CNM (Cambridge, Mass.)
Francisca ‘Mapitso Matsoha, founder and president, Midwives Association for Lesotho (Lesotho)
Eden Matteson, RN (Bronx, N.Y.)
Laura Matthews, MSN, CNM, co-chair West Virginia ACNM, midwife, FamilyCare (Hurricane, W.V.)
Kristina Mattson, RN, BAN (Saint Paul, Minn.)
Aron Mavros, CD, DONA (Ocala, Fla.)
Carol Mawhinney (Mount Kisco, N.Y.)
Camellia May, BS, LM, CPM (Houston, Texas)
Lior Mayer, CNM, NP, MS (Nirit, Israel)
Doddie McClure, MA (Farmersburg, Ind.)
Jenny McDonald, CNM, MSN (Bremen, Ga.)
Kirsten McFarlane (Winnipeg, MB, Canada)
Jack McGuire, CNM, MSN, The Longstreet Clinic (Gainesville, Ga.)
Janet McIlroy, ICCE, CD (DONA), retired nurse, MA, LCCT (Neptune Beach, Fla.)
Deirdre McLary, doula, CCBE, midwifery student (Nyack, N.Y.)
Allison McMillan, BSc (Halifax, NS, Canada)
Marie Meakin, RN, vice president, Foundation for the Advancement of Midwifery (Albuquerque, N.M.)
Carolyne Meehan, mother (Pa.)
Deb Melser, RN, MSN, SNM (Nacogdoches, Texas)
Cristina Menking, CNM, MS (Charleston, W.V.)
Emily Merideth, MSN, FNP, MPH (Oakland, Calif.)
Penny Merkel, RN, LCCE, hypnobirth Instructor (New York, N.Y.)
Stephanie N. Meunier, successful VBAC mother (Warwick, R.I.)
Andrea Meyer, BA, LM, CPM, IAIM (Encinitas, Calif.)
Arlinda Michael, BSN, RN, IBCLC (Madison, Wis.)
Wenonah Michallet-Ferrier, birth center support staff and birth advocate (Tucson, Ariz.)
Alexandra Michel, CNM, MSN (Auburn Hills, Mich.)
Elizabeth Mitchell Armstrong, PhD, MPA (Princeton, N.J.)
Cecilia Mitchell Miller, CCE – AAHCC (Jacksonville, Fla.)
Matthew William Miller (Madison, Wis.)
Kelly Monaghan, PhD candidate (Medicine) Memorial University St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador (Canada)
Marie F. Mongan, MEd, MHy, director, HypnoBirthing Institute (Chichester, N.H.)
Bobbie J. Moon, MN, CNM, JD midwife, attorney (St. Louis, Mo.)
Mary Moore, CNM (Madison, Wis.)
Tessa Morales, MLS (New York, N.Y.)
Maria Morehead (Seattle, Wash.)
Priya Morganstern, counsel, Foundation for the Advancement of Midwifery (West Hartford, Conn.)
Linda Morse (Millis, Mass.)
Elizabeth Morrison, CD (DONA) (Greenport, N.Y.)
Ellen Morrison, current nursing student, future CNM (Honolulu, Hawaii)
Kim Mosny, CPM, LM (Midlothian, Va.)
Joyce Moxley Thomas, MHA, CPM/LM, HCHI (Chino, Calif.)
Tanya E. Mudrick, CPM, LM (Madison, Wis.)
Cara Muhlhahn, CNM, (New York, N.Y.)
Kathi Muldder, CPM, Mchigan Midwives Association Board Member (Traverse City, Mich.)
Nicole Murray, birth doula (Newberg, Ore.)
Desiree Nelson, RN, IBCLC (Cottage Grove, Ore.)
Jami Nelson, doulas of North America, Metropolitan doula Group (Cedarhurst, N.Y.)
Carol A Nelson, LM, CPM, The Farm Midwifery Center, co-chair, Innovations in Maternity Health Services Committee, Maternal Child Health Section, American Public Health Association (Summertown, Tenn.)
Amie Newman, managing editor, RH Reality Check (Seattle, Wash.)
Joni Nichols, BS, MS, CCE, CD (DONA) (CBI) (Guadalajara, Mexico)
Mark Nichols, Ob/Gyn, professor, Oregon Health & Science University (Portland, Ore.)
Stephanie Nicodemus, MSN, CNM, Shenandoah Women’s Health (Martinsburg, W.V.)
Angelita Nixon, CNM (Scott Depot, W.V.)
Sylvia Obernuefemann, CNM (Belleville, Ill.)
Amanda Olinde, RN, student nurse midwife (Denham Springs, La.)
Lisa Orr, RN-L&D (Arcata, Calif.)
Rosemary Ortiz, birth doula (Grafton, Ohio)
Tracy Osborne, birth doula and childbirth educator (Murrieta, Calif.)
Patricia Otis, RN, ICCE (West Winfield, N.Y.)
Mari Oxenberg, RN, SCNM (Topanga, Calif.)
Rebecca Parker, (Muncie Ind.)
Brenda Parrish, DEM, CLC, CCCE, CD (DONA) (Thomasville, Ga.)
Andrea Patchett, BHsc, midwife, mother (Windsor, NS, Canada)
Debbie Pease, co-chair, South Dakota Safe Childbirth Options (Centerville, S.D.)
Susan Pelkey (Williamston, Mich.)
Paula Pelletier-Butler, MSM, LM, CPM (Flagstaff, Ariz.)
Vicki Penwell, CPM, LM, MSM, founder and director, Mercy In Action (Philippines)
Neil Pepe, artistic director (New York, N.Y.)
Marissa T. Perino, CLEC, CD (DONA) (San Diego, Calif.)
Barbara Bridgman Perkins, PhD, author, The Medical Delivery Business (Olympia, Wash.)
Dana Perlman, CNM, MSN (Philadelphia, Pa.)
Marcy Perlman Tardio, CNM, homebirth midwife, writer (New York, N.Y.)
Eileen Phoenix (Staten Island, N.Y.)
Naomi Pless, MD, MCP Family Physician (Rochester, N.Y.)
Kate Plummer, MSN, CNM, clinical assistant professor, University of Vermont (Vt.)
Lisa Pomarico, MSW (Chicago, Ill.)
Yvonne Ponte (Vineyard Haven, Mass.)
Janine Ptaszek (New York N.Y.)
Shayla Puhl, RN (Lethbridge, AB, Canada)
Stephanie Purinton, RN, IBCLC, SNM (Cottonwood, Ariz.)
Amber L. Pursel (Portland, Ore.)
Kathy Putnam, BSW, MPH (Covington, Va.)
Celeste Rachell, childbirth educator, birth doula, doula trainer (Roslyn Heights, N.Y.)
Tania Randolph (Philadelphia, Pa.)
Ivy Jacqueline Rasool, doula, childbirth educator, aspiring midwife (San Diego, Calif.)
Victoria Ratledge (Belgium)
Ellen Razgaitis, CNM (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Kellisa Reed (Kennewick, Wash.)
Ariana Reid, bachelor of midwifery student (Sydney, Australia)
Molly Remer, MSW, ICCE, childbirth educator and writer (Rolla, Mo.)
Sheila Reynertson, Raising Women’s Voices for the Health Care We Need (New York, N.Y.)
Carol Richards, PhD (Santa Monica, Calif.)
Kristi Ridd-Young, BS, ICCE, CD (DONA), president, Midwives College of Utah (Salt Lake City, Utah)
Karen Robb, RM, RN, MA (Halifax, NS, Canada)
Chris Robertazzi (Ridgewood, N.J.)
Jo Roberts, BS, certified birth doula, PP-trained doula (Asheville, N.C.)
Jenna Robertson, MA, Ontario Midwifery Education Program (Toronto, Canada)
Anne Robin (New York, N.Y.)
Zoe Robin (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Amy M. Romano, MSN, CNM, perinatal research and advocacy consultant (Milford, Conn.)
Jessica Rose, MHC (New York, NY)
Julie Rosen, JD, CD (DONA), PCD (DONA), LCCE, IBCLC, LLLL (Teaneck, N.J.)
Joan Rosen Bloch, PhD, CRNP (Philadelphia, Pa.)
Erika Rosenberg, (Chicago, Ill.)
Erika L. Rosenberg, MA, Social Sciences (Chicago, Ill.)
Nancey Rosensweig, CNM, LCCE (New York, N.Y.)
Beth Ross, SNM, RN, BSN (Beckley, W.V.)
Vanessa Ross, CNM, MSN, Midwifery Care of Holyoke (Holyoke, Mass.)
Debra Rossie, MSN, CNM (St. Clair Shores, Mich.)
Catherine Rott, CNHP (Okla.)
Cathy A. Rude, CPM, LM (Katy, Texas)
Gerri L. Ryan, LM, CPM, FACCE, CD (DONA) (San Diego, Calif.)
Jamila Salih-Fillmore (Jacksonville, Fla.)
Theresa Schmidt, RN, student nurse midwife (Fombell, Pa.)
Debbie Schneider, CPM (Ga.)
Whitney Scholz, medical student (Worcester, Mass.)
Mavis N. Schorn, PhD, CNM (Nashville, Tenn.)
Beverly Schubert, CPM, LM, member MANA, MAWS, OMA (Mentor, Ohio)
Carol Schumacher, LM, CPM (Houston, Texas)
Linda Schutt, BS, CM, CPM, homebirth midwife (Trumansburg, N.Y.)
Nicole Schwartz, MSW, CD, CBE, Owner, Spirit Led Services (Phoenixville, Pa.)
Miriam Schwarzschild, CNM, Homebirth Practice (New York, N.Y.)
Kimberly Sebeck, CLD, CCCE, CAPPA (Knoxville, Tenn.)
Kay Sedler, CNM, MN, FACNM (Albuquerque, N.M.)
Lindsey Seger, co-leader, ICAN of Nashville (Gallatin, Tenn.)
Marlena Seminario (Bethpage, N.Y.)
Julia Sents (Wellsburg, Iowa)
Heather Sevcik, CD (DONA) (Asheville, N.C.)
Kathy Shamoun, LAc, CD (DONA) (Laurel Hollow, N.Y.)
Erica Shane, birth worker (New York, N.Y.)
Sarah Shannon (Minneapolis, Minn.)
Odelia Shargian, CD DONA, (River Edge, N.J.)
Jenna Shaw-Battista, NP, CNM (San Francisco, Calif.)
Gail Sherman (Huntington, N.Y.)
Teri Shilling, MS, CD (DONA), LCCE, founder, Passion for Birth (Mt. Vernon, Wash.)
Ellen Sidles-Farhi, CD (DONA) (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Karla Silverman, CNM, MS, project manager, APC Initiative of New York State at Planned Parenthood of New York City (New York, N.Y.)
Daphne Singingtree, CPM (Eugene, Ore.)
Amanda Sini, CNM (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Laure Sinnhuber-Giles (New York, N.Y.)
Brooke Smith, ICAN of Central Oklahoma (Midwest City, Okla.)
Mickey Sperlich, MA, CPM (Ann Arbor, Mich.)
Gretchen Spicer, CPM, LM (Avoca, Wis.)
Lynne Staff, RN, EM, BHlthScNsg, MMid (Hons), FACM (Balmoral Ridge, Queensland, Australia)
Julie Stagg, MSN, RN (Austin, Texas)
Fiora Starchild-Wolf, Perinatal Counselor, Student Midwife (Eugene, Ore.)
Rebecca Staska Jankowski, LAc, MSOM (Milwaukee, Wis.)
Janna Stefanek, BSN, RNC, MPH (Tucson, Ariz.)
Vanessa Stephens Coldwater, Traditional Midwife (Minneapolis, Minn.)
Ann Sterlin (Manchester, Mich.)
Maureen Stevens, MSN, adjunct professor clinical instructor (Dana Point, Calif.)
Sandra Stewart (Ann Arbor, Mich.)
Catherine Stewart-Lindley, PhD, CBE, CEA board member, CD (DONA), labor doula (New York, N.Y.)
Susan Studebaker, RNC, CNM, MS, CHES (Dickinson, Texas)
Jana Studelska CPM, LM (Duluth, Minn.)
Kelli Sugihara, CEO, Larsen Billing Service (Enumclaw, Wash.)
Antoinette Sullivan, MPH (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Nancy Sullivan, CNM, MS, FACNM (Portland, Ore.)
Eileen Sullivan, MCHD, CBE, EFT-ADV (Charlotte, N.C.)
Farra Swan, ND, CPM (Phoenix, Ariz.)
Julia Swart, LM, CPM (Fruitland, Idaho)
Ann Sweeney, president, Massachusetts Friends of Midwives (MFOM) (Boston, Mass.)
James Sweet, MS (Rochester, N.Y.)
Mariah Sweet (Rochester N.Y.)
Cathy Szudy, RNC, IBCLC, CNM, MSN, APNP (Madison, Wis.)
Moira Tannenbaum, IBCLC, LCCE, RNC-LRN student nurse-midwife (Ann Arbor, Mich.)
Ellen Tattelman, MD (Bronx, N.Y.)
Dawn Teklinsky, MSN, CNM (Wyandotte, Mich.)
Heather Terrell (Mesa, Ariz.)
Amy Thompson, LMBT, C.AYUR (Asheville, N.C.)
Laura Thompson Shive (Mount Wolf, Pa.)
Helene Thompson-Scott, CNM, University of Rochester (Rochester, N.Y.)
Trili Timm (Chichester, N.H.)
Judith Tinkelenberg, CNM, midwife/director Sage Femme Midwifery Service (San Francisco, Calif.)
Amy Tinney RN, CPM, LM (Marina Del Rey, Calif.)
Sher Todd, PhD, MSN, CNS, RN, Tobacco-Free Babies Project (Reno, Nev.)
Lynn Tomlinson Anderson, CNM, MS (Carson City, Nev.)
Tanya Tringali, CNM (New Rochelle, N.Y.)
Jennifer Tucker, birth doula (Jacksonville, Fla.)
Audrey Tunis (Chicago, Ill.)
Glenda Turner, student midwife (Richmond, Va.)
Natalie Turner, child birth educator, registered children’s nurse (Budapest, Hungary)
Lois Uttley, co-founder, Raising Women’s Voices for the Health Care We Need (New York, N.Y.)
Wendy L. Valhoff, CNM, FACNM, FNP, MSN (Lathrup Village, Mich.)
Cheri Van Hoover, CNM, MS, faculty, Philadelphia University (Port Hadlock, Wash.)
Julia Vance, CNM, MS (Madison, Wis.)
Deborah Vasquez, MD, MPH, FAAP, Community Pediatric Programs (Bronx, N.Y.)
Liz Vazquez, CH, LMT, HBCE (Austin, Texas)
Sara Vecchione, RNC, BSN (Richmond, Va.)
Kelly Villa, MSN, CNM, RN, APNP (Milwaukee, Wis.)
Jana Voelke Studelska, CPM, LM (Duluth, Minn.)
Cecilia Wachdorf, PhD, CNM (Minneapolis, Minn.)
Jennifer Walker, CD (CBI), doula (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
Deborah S. Walker, DNSc, CNM, WHNP-BC, FNP-BC, FACNM (Detroit, Mich.)
Sarah Wallbaum, CD (DONA), CCBE (ACBE) (Prairie Village, Kan.)
Jennifer Walsh (Brooktondale, N.Y.)
Ruth Walsh, CPM (Morgantown, W.V.)
Pamela Warren, RN, BSN, CCE, CLC (Reno, Nev.)
Jeanne Watson Driscoll, PhD, RN, PC (Boston, Mass.)
Ann Weathersby, CNM, Kaiser Permanente (Ga.)
Stana Weisburd, licensed massage therapist, birth doula and advocate (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Dixie L. Whetsell, MS, IBCLC (Portland, Ore.)
Deborah White, RNC, SNM (Tallahassee, Fla.)
Joanne White (East Lansing, Mich.)
Holly Wiersma, CD (DONA) (Pleasant Hill, Calif.)
Ruth Wilf, CNM, PhD, The Birth Center (Bryn Mawr, Pa.)
Lisa Willard (Willis, Texas)
Deanne Williams, MS, CNM (Salt Lake City, Utah)
Michele Williamson (Courtenay, British Columbia)
Rachel Williston, CNM, CPM (Kansas City, Mo.)
Tanya Wills, Mother and doula (New York, N.Y.)
Cheyenne Winkler (Ackley, Iowa)
Claire Winstone, PhD, prenatal and perinatal psychology (Santa Clarita, Calif.)
Maryanne Wisniewski, RN (Coram, N.Y.)
Jill Wodnick, MA, CD (DONA), prenatal yoga instructor, birthweaver (Montclair, N.J.)
Jennifer Wolfe, RN, student nurse midwife (Columbus, Ohio)
Sarah Wolfe (South Orange, N.J.)
Billee Wolff, RN, CD (DONA), LCCE (New Milford, N.J.)
Natalie Wommack, RNC, LM, CPM (Houston, Texas)
Miriam Wood (Washington, D.C.)
Tamara Wrenn, MA, CCE, CIMT CEAMNY affiliated (Harriman, N.Y.)
Helena Wu, licensed midwife, CPM (Middletown Springs, Vt.)
Stasi York, birth doula, education coordinator, Birth Matters (Charlottesville, Va.)
Vicky York, IBCLC, CPD (Portland, Ore.)
Rachel Zeller (Buffalo, N.Y.)


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Choices in Childbirth