Have you heard me cheering with the recent news?
Yes, it’s long overdue that our Maternity Care System gets an overhaul, but recent changes are happening and it’s a big deal. Having been working as a DONA doula, doula trainer and Lamaze Childbirth Educator, I have had an in-depth look at the huge variation in practices between providers and place of birth both in the U.S. and around the world. No other field of medicine has such a variation of care for pregnant people and their families.
It seems that finally, everyone is seeing the cracks in the system that so many of us have been speaking about for years, but until recently, many of our concerns were ignored.
In particular, the impact of systemic racism and the inequities and disparities for Black, Indigenous, People of Color as well as our overuse of technology and lack of more natural ways to support and provide comfort in labor, birth, and postpartum.
This week I had some amazing webinars and meetings about the International Childbirth Initiative, planning for a new education series with Every Mother Counts, and listening to our Vice President Kamala Harris with Allyson Felix.
Allyson Felix, the most decorated woman in Olympic track and field history, shared her childbirth experience, the challenges she faces as a working mother, and her ongoing advocacy for advancing maternal health.
There were several panels discussing the health and wellbeing of mother’s and new parents including doulas, midwives, physicians, nurses and centering all birthing people, the importance of birth equity and birth justice, and postpartum care for 1 year to fully support new parents
Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services – said they will “identify hospitals that have implemented quality initiatives”“Across CMS, we are also improving access to and quality of maternity care. We’re making it easier to enroll in and keep Medicaid coverage. We’re also partnering with states to expand coverage of childbirth supports, such as doulas, that have been shown to improve birth outcomes. And we’re expanding our provider quality measurement programs.” (read more)
Many states are already covering doulas for Medicaid and doulas were spoken about, again and again, yesterday in this historic White House Day of Advocacy. I hope this trend will only grow!
If you are pregnant, I hope you will find a doula to support you at this special time and if you are wondering if you should become a doula, the time is now!!
© Gwen Schroeder |Rebirth Photography
© Monet Nicole