Sunday, April 3, 2011

I have more confidence in doctors and machines than in midwives

My son's birth in 2009
The statement above is undoubtedly controversial, but speaking personally, it is nevertheless true.
Many midwives do a great job, and if I had no access to hospitals or medical intervention, then absolutely, I would not have wanted to give birth alone, and would have been eternally grateful for the knowledge and expertise of a midwife by my side.

But in the 21st Century, with all its medical advances,
I simply felt more comfortable placing my trust - and the health of my unborn babies - in the information that ultrasound scans could provide, and the hands of my obstetrician who would ultimately carry out my cesarean delivery. I didn't trust Mother Nature in the slightest, and I wasn't interested in doing everything naturally, which is essentially what midwives specialize in.

BMJ response

Therefore, I am very concerned that the recently published King's Fund report in the UK: 'Staffing In Maternity Units' has recommended that midwife-led models of care should be deployed across the NHS for low- and medium-risk women. As such, I have just published a Rapid Response in the British Medical Journal, titled: "Midwife led care is not appropriate for all low risk women, and its cost-effectiveness is not proven".

I don't wish to be interpreted as someone who is "anti-midwife" - I'm not.

But I was a "low risk" woman (up until late in pregnancy when breech presentation was discovered) and personally, I felt no desire or need to meet with a midwife - and because I was in the U.S. at the time, I didn't have to). But had I been pregnant in the UK, I would have had a battle on my hands - a battle to choose an obstetrician-led model of care, which would have far better suited my informed birth plan:

An elective, prophylactic cesarean.

This is the situation that women who contact me at my wesbite are increasingly coming up against, and it makes no logical, ethical or financial sense. Please sign this petition if you agree.

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