Medicine - Midwives and Doctors Must Work Together

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Midwives and Doctors Must Work Together

A recent controversy among soon-to-be parents and the medical profession is over the use of midwives. Some say that midwives are a good choice because of their personal, loving, educated and competent obstetric and gynecological care. Stacy Stich of the American College of Nurse-Midwives states, this not only includes the hands on care but also the emotional and supportive aspects. A midwife has the ability to assist a couple through the birthing process in a natural and comfortable atmosphere.(1)

Others say that midwives are not educated enough to handle pregnancy complications and may require transfer to a doctor. Sandra Jacobs from the American College of Nurse-Midwives quotes "often times a pregnancy that starts out completely normal can develop into a life-threatening problem. These kind of possible complications need not be over looked(1). Therefore I think midwives should not practice on their own, but should be accompanied by an obstetrician and work together.

There are two kinds of midwives, an independent and a Certified Nurse Midwife. Independent midwives or "direct entry" midwives attend births at home rather than in hospitals or birth centers. These midwifes are trained at independent midwifery schools or through apprenticeship. CNMs are registered nurses and trained and regulated as a part of the nursing profession. Independent midwives are legal in some states, illegal in others although direct-entry or independent midwives are the primary home-birth attendants in the United States. Archie Brodsky, senior research associate at Harvard Medical School's Program says midwives listen and hear their cli...

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...Review 11 Aug. 1997: 46- 48.

Jacobs, Sandra. "Having Your Baby with a Nurse-Midwife." January 1997, n. pag. Online. World Wide Web. <http://www.midwife.org/focus/trans.htm > 18 Feb. 1999.

Lawrence, Hal C. "Not Either/or, But Obstetricians and Midwives Together." Public Health Reports Sep.-Oct. 1997: 395-396.

Rogoznica, June. "Choices in Childbirth." Parents Magazine Sep. 1997: 94-97.

Russell, Jan. "Push Push Push: 24 Hours in America's Busiest Birth Hospital." Red Book Nov. 1996: 106-112.

Stich, Stacy. "What is a Midwife?" 1998, n. pag. Online. World Wide Web.

<http://www.feminist.com/stacy.htm > 18 Feb. 1999.

Thompson, Joyce E. "Ethics and Midwifery Practice." World Health March-April !997: 12- 14.

Wagner, Marsden. "A Global Witch-Hunt." The Lancet 14 Oct.1995: 1020-1023.

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