Pick at least one way to spread the word in your community for midwifery care. This can be through social media (yes- reposting or sharing this post counts!), news releases, hosting a party, organizing a walk for women. The ACNM Our Moment of Truth toolkit (found here: http://www.midwife.org/index.asp?bid=1412&RequestBinary=True#) has a variety of items that can help you spread the word. #MidwivesMakeADifference; #NatMW16; #GeorgiaMidwives
GEORGIA MIDWIFE OF THE DAY
Years of Teaching: I started teaching in 2010 as clinical instructor and have since joined the faculty at Emory in 2015
Years of Research: I started research many years ago- I did bench lab work research in reproductive disorders as a biology major in undergrad, I’ve been involved in public policy research as medical social worker looking at prenatal care access in GA with Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies. In midwifery school at OHSU, I met Nancy Lowe, faculty and advisor who was doing research on labor dystocia and started doing research with her. When I went back for my PhD I conducted research with again Nancy Lowe and pushed forward on the original research in labor dystocia.
Practice name/location/website: I work PRN at Northside Women’s Specialists in Atlanta, GA (http://nws-obgyn.com/midwifery-service)
Population served: We serve ~50% medicaid and mixture of all nationalities. Plus the practice is associated with a maternal fetal specialist group so we get lots of high risk transfers from all over Georgia… these high risk patients receive midwifery care unless they risk out of vaginal birth.
Why midwifery: It’s a good story. Deana Womack has been a midwife for many years and for a time worked with a few midwives out of Dekalb Medical Center. When I was very young, I was just finished with my undergraduate degree and got pregnant- I had to go to a free clinic and met Deana- she was the midwife who cared for me. One day I rode my bike to the clinic for an appointment and passed out after they drew my blood. Deana tried to get and did get my dirty bike and me into her new vehicle to take me home and I’d never met any healthcare provider that would do that, she was more than a healthcare provider, she went above and beyond. I knew I needed to figure out how to do what she did and become one of those people. She cared for me in 2 pregnancies, then 20 years later when I was researching at Emory, I heard her voice behind me in the lab and I knew, that’s Deana!
ACNM member? Yes Why? I feel like we all need to be members of ACNM, there is strength in numbers. If you look at ACOG membership, 98% of OB physicians are members and only 50% of midwives are members of ACNM. We as midwives have a long way to go in the way we are represented and regulated at both state and national levels. Until we can join the fight I don’t think anyone is going to give it to us.
Words of wisdom to midwives: Find a group of other midwives that you can hang out with because nobody else understands what you do or who you are the way other midwives do. Coming to ACNM meetings is another way to meet more midwives and learn survival techniques, we have a hard job- and without support it can drag you down.
Words of wisdom to women: I wish more women were educated about their bodies and about their care providers and motivated to get the best care possible for themselves. I think too often even in today’s world and even in this country women are pushed around and convinced to do things they don’t really want to do, they end up getting care that’s not what they really need. Educate yourself and demand what you deserve in terms of being treated right and well and humanely.
How you celebrate midwifery: I have a bumper sticker about midwifery on my car and I love when people ask me questions about midwifery. Part of the way I celebrate is in loving how I tell others about midwives and how everyone woman needs a midwife. I also like to get T-shirts from ACNM with cooky messages that cause people to ask me about midwifery I like to have fun with it.