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Gender and Health: Midwifery
Transcript of Gender and Health: Midwifery
Sage-femme = “wise” woman
Jordmoder = “earth-mother” Social Constructions
Interferences Economic Race Gender Doctors vs Midwifes History The New
World & growth of medical field Untrained women met the needs of women in labor, many were in isolation of each other however formally trained Midwives from Europe passed their knowledge and skills to others nearby. A legacy the "man midwife" "Doctors “deliver” babies and believe that having a baby is something that happens to a woman. Midwives assist at birth and believe that giving birth is something that a woman does" Clients vs Patients Mary Breckinridge Activist in the 1920's
Frontier Nursing Service Manage healthcare of essentially normal women and their babies during pregnancy, labor, delivery, and the postpartum period.
Gynecologic care to all women, including family planning.
Nurse-midwives practice within a health care system focusing on collaborative management or referral as needed by health needs of mom and child. Certified Nurse Midwife Perceived dangerous nature of childbirth, the necessity for technologic interventions in childbirth, and doubts about the quality of midwifery training and practice. Marginalization occurs despite ample evidence demonstrating that a midwifery model delivers high-quality cost-effective care. The Midwife Debates 1920-35 “Childbirth is a pathological process from which only a small minority of women escape damage... with modern eyes it is no longer a normal function.”
Dr. DeLee Nurse Midwives The answer to underserved populations 1918 Maternity Center Association NYC 1929 Frontier Nursing Service - University
1941 Tuskegee Institute
1944 Medical Mission Sisters Santa Fe NM "La Casita" From the
beginning… Women have assisted other
women in childbirth and
experiences were passed from
generation to generation.
Midwives learned by observing births &
referencing more experienced midwives
Men(beginning with shamans, followed by priests and rabbis, & later by doctors) were called only to deal with unusual or dangerous complications. by 1900 physicians attended nearly half of the nations births, nearly all to middle and upper class women. Midwives took care of women who could not afford a doctor. Hospitals & automobiles
Social reproach working
Midwifery as a stigma of
the lower class
Maternal mortality on the rise Why? Prejudices against the intelligence and capability of immigrants, african americans, & poor people were used to defame midwifery "In France midwives were not nurses. In America nurses were not midwives. In England trained women were both nurses and midwives. It grew upon me that Nurse-Midwifery was the logical response to the needs of young children in rural america." Pathology: The study and diagnosis of disease is a natural birth pathologic? NYC Health Commissioner stated in 1911, “(the US is) the only civilized country in the world in which the health as well as the life and future well being of mothers and infants is not safeguarded so far as possible through the training and control of midwives”. American cultural norms privilege science, technology, and status associated with high cost goods and services. In this context, midwives are seen as caring, but less educated, healthcare providers. When it became a competition between Midwives and MD's instead of collaboration. Education, research, & collaboration must continue to make giving birth a safer and more human approach. What are Midwives? We've been doing this a while ... all around the world. The split between doctors and midwives We persisted ... We were really supported by feminists, hippies, & necessary for the lower classes Today after doing their research, we are supported by the educated elites... & spreading = Nurse Midwifery
United States Stephanie.Scott@frontier.edu Spreading by experience...