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New York

The NYS Professional Midwifery Practice Act (PMPA), passed in 1992, established criteria for licensure of all midwives and created the NYS Board of Midwifery. NYS is the first state in which nurse-midwives and direct-entry midwives are regulated by the same legislation and the same Board using the same designation – Licensed Midwife (LM).

That said, this law and the regulations developed from it were enacted before the CPM credential was fully developed and has not embraced it as a direct route to licensure. CPMs can get licensed in NYS, but they need to demonstrate their credentials to the Board and must take the AMCB exam (used to certified CNMs & CMs). Even so several CPMs have done so (including a Chair of the Board). [For details about education requirements go to The Board’s webpage -- ]

All midwives licensed in NYS must have a bachelor’s degree (in any subject) and attend an accredited midwifery school. It is possible to use the apprenticeship route to become a CPM, but to become licensed in NYS the CPM must be supplemented with further study. Furthermore, the law allows LMs to provide well-woman care, but the CPM does not currently certify that training. LMs must also have some training in pharmacology, but the NYS Education Department has developed a 3 hour course for that.

While CNMs, CMs, and CPMs could get licensed in NY, the primary barrier to independent midwifery and access to licensed midwives for homebirth was a requirement that all LMs have a written practice agreement (WPA) with a physician or hospital with obstetric privileges. This caused access to licensed midwives for homebirth to be limited in particular areas of the state. The Board had no control over this requirement; as it was written into the law and only the state Legislature could change it. So that's what midwifery supporters worked toward. They supported the Midwifery Modernization Act (MMA) passed in 2010 that removed the WPA requirement. This was a huge win for midwifery and home birth advocates that illustrated the power of strong consumer advocacy in state legislatures.

Education Requirements for Licensure in NYS:

All midwives, regardless of credential or educational background must meet certain criteria to be eligible for licensure in NYS:
-- Bachelor's degree (doesn't matter what subject) -- which you already have.
-- Midwifery education at a NYS approved midwifery school*
-- Can demonstrate competency in particular areas relating to well-woman care and pharmacology (see check under education)

All midwives must take and pass the AMCB certification exam which is designed for CNMs or CMs, but which all midwives in NYS must take (the NARM exam is not accepted here).

* Several MEAC schools have been deemed acceptable by NYS. CPMs using the PEP process can become licensed, but they must then go to a midwifery school and have a bachelor’s degree. Several CPMs have become licensed in NYS by attending the distance learning program at the National College of Midwifery and obtaining a BS in midwifery.

Midwives Alliance of New York (MANY)

Contact: Jackie Snyder
, NY
Phone: (315) 331-8482

New York Friends of Midwives

Contact: Tisha Graham
, NY
Phone: (518) 584-6619


Educating the public to improve maternity care for all women. Mother-friendly care incorporates the Midwives Model of Care, which treats birth as a normal, natural event, provides personalized care, and sees women and their partners as individuals. BirthNet believes that imporovements will only come when women, as educated consumers, demand them.

Alternate contact: Tisha Graham (518) 584-6619

Contact: Carolyn Keefe
215 Partridge St
Albany, NY 12203
Phone: (518) 482-2504

Choices in Childbirth

An advocacy group helping women to make informed maternity care decisions.


CIC is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving maternity care by providing the public, especially childbearing women, with the information necessary to make fully informed decisions relating to how, where, and with whom they will give birth. CIC endorses the Mother Friendly Childbirth Initiative and is an enthusiastic supporters of the Midwives Model of Care.


441 Lexington Avenue, 19th floor 

New York, NY, 10017

Phone: (212) 983 4122


None at this time

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Link to ACNM for Information on Certified Nurse Midwives