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What is Citizens for Midwifery?

Citizens for Midwifery is a non-profit, volunteer, grassroots organization. Founded by several mothers in 1996, it is the only national consumer-based group promoting the Midwives Model of Care.

A grassroots organization means a large number of people implementing a coordinated strategy to achieve change. The goal of Citizens for Midwifery is to see that the Midwives Model of Care is available to all childbearing women and universally recognized as the best kind of care for pregnancy and birth. Citizens for Midwifery also endorses the Mother-Friendly Childbirth Initiative™.

If you are interested in maternity care that is ...

  • Safe
  • Respectful
  • Family Centered
  • Health Promoting
  • Cost Effective

Then Citizens for Midwifery (CfM) has information and resources you need!

The Key is the Midwives Model of Care

At the core of the Midwives Model of Care is deep respect for the normalcy of birth and for the uniqueness of each childbearing woman and her family. This approach to maternity care promotes health and helps to prevent complications. Care providers who practice this model of care have excellent outcomes while providing safe, individualized care.

Access to the Midwives Model of Care is severely limited or nonexistent in many places due to state laws and regulations, hospital policies, economic structures, and misinformation that prevent or discourage qualified caregivers from providing this kind of care.

Citizens for Midwifery works to change those factors that restrict the availability of the Midwives Model of Care.

Core Values

Citizens for Midwifery has outlined our most basic core values relating to both maternity care and to the role of Citizens for Midwifery in efforts to improve maternity care.

Core Values About Maternity Care

  • Pregnancy and childbirth are normal, healthy processes.
  • Access to midwives and the Midwives Model of Care is vital to normal childbirth.
  • The Midwives Model of Care outlines a type of care and is not limited to the education or any specific category of provider.
  • Respect is at the core of the Midwives Model of Care. Every woman should be treated with respect in every phase of her care from pregnancy through postpartum. Respect includes, but is not limited to complete information about tests, treatments, and procedures, fully informed consent, preservation of privacy, and polite respectful communications by all involved with her care.
  • Pregnancy and childbirth effect the physical, mental, and psycho-social well-being of mothers, babies, and families, therefore maternity care should not only avoid harm, but also provide benefits to them.
  • Maternity care should be grounded in evidence, and care providers should be accountable to the mother and family for the mental and physical outcomes resulting from their actions or inactions.
  • Clinical decisions in maternity care should be focused on promoting the overall health and well-being of the mother-baby dyad; these decisions should never be influenced or determined by economic considerations or legal fears.
  • The use of practices, medications, and medical procedures should be based on the needs of each individual woman, her baby, and the circumstances of her pregnancy, labor, birth, and postpartum experiences with her full understanding and consent and based on the best evidence available. Routine protocols not based on research evidence should be avoided.
  • Maternity care is an important aspect of health care in the United States and must be included in all discussions of health care policy.
  • The quality and cost of maternity care and its outcomes directly or indirectly affect every US citizen.

Core Values of Citizens for Midwifery

  • Citizens have a right to be involved in maternity care policy, and CfM is a powerful voice for consumers.
  • CfM works to improve access to the Midwives Model of Care in all settings for women of all ages, ethnic backgrounds, races, religions, sexual orientations, abilities, and socioeconomic circumstances.
  • Coalition-building, communications, and networking with other organizations are essential for achieving our vision.
  • The education, credentialing, regulation, and licensing of midwives are of critical concern to consumers, because they determine whether or not childbearing women will be able to get the kind of midwifery care they want and need.
The Midwives Model of Care

The Midwives Model of Care is based on the fact that pregnancy and birth are normal life processes.

The Midwives Model of Care includes:

  • Monitoring the physical, psychological, and social well-being of the mother throughout the childbearing cycle
  • Providing the mother with individualized education, counseling, and prenatal care, continuous hands-on assistance during labor and delivery, and postpartum support
  • Minimizing technological interventions
  • Identifying and referring women who require obstetrical attention

The application of this woman-centered model of care has been proven to reduce the incidence of birth injury, trauma, and cesarean section.

Copyright © 1996-2008, Midwifery Task Force
All Rights Reserved

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What does Citizens for Midwifery do?
  • A consumer-based grassroots organization promoting the Midwives Model of Care.
  • Provides information about midwifery, the Midwives Model of Care and related childbirth issues.
  • Encourages and provides practical guidance for effective grassroots actions for midwifery.
  • Speaks up for consumer interests regarding midwifery and maternity care
  • Works to change factors that restrict access to midwifery and the Midwives Model of Care.

In the last few years CfM has provided assistance to midwives and birth activists in more than 16 states, three of which have now passed laws allowing midwives trained in the Midwives Model of Care to attend births outside the hospital.

Citizens for Midwifery helps you...

Learn

  • Why the Midwives Model of Care works
  • About different kinds of midwives in the U.S.
  • Facts about maternity care
  • What you can do

Connect

  • With resources about birth and midwifery
  • With the experience of others
  • With friends of midwives around the country

Take Action

  • Promote the Midwives Model of Care
  • Change public opinion and change legislation
  • Use effective communication techniques

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What can you do? Join CfM!

Become informed, and join with others to ensure access to the Midwives Model of Care. Donations (they are tax-exempt) also support CfM's work and are greatly appreciated.

Citizens for Midwifery Membership Information and Form.

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