Monday, October 8, 2012

What do MI Midwives Make of Public Outcry for Safer Practices?

What do MI midwives make of public outcry for safer practices?   

Well, they think they are the victims. 

Instead of working to examine and improve practices, the leaders of midwifery in MI are hosting workshops to teach fellow midwives how to protect themselves.

Instead of acknowledging the very real problems that permeate midwifery, and out of hospital birth, they are convening to talk about how to protect themselves by revisiting "informed consent". 

Instead of finding ways to bargain for malpractice insurance that would protect families, they are discussing how to protect their assets.  

     "I just attended an informative workshop at MANA on protecting your assets. 
     We will be sharing information." 
     ~ Patrice Bobier, MI CPM, and MI Midwives Association board member

Instead of hearing the voices of concerned families, doulas, and other midwives, they are choosing to pamper themselves with massages, pedicures, and a good dose of denial.  

Shouldn't the focus be on how to make out-of-hospital birth as safe as it can possibly be?  Shouldn't the conversations be about why and how babies are dying preventable deaths?

 Not according the the Michigan Midwives Association...

The only true statement in this entire advertisement is, "Midwifery in Michigan has seen many crises this past year."  Our definition of "crises" differs greatly.  The real crisis is the number of babies that died or were injured, and the families (not the midwives) mourning the loss of their children under preventable circumstances.   This crisis is further complicated by the dysfunctional and dangerous practices that every midwife attending out-of-hospital birth has seen, but won't admit.  Ignoring these instances, these families, these babies is the crisis.  Pretending there aren't problems, and refusing to address them adequately will lead further down the same self-destructive path.  

If midwives are mourning, it's because the truth is spreading across MI, and women demand safer, more reliable options for out-of-hospital birth.  I'd like to see a workshop that addresses issues of screening for risk, reporting outcomes, educational standards, defining scope of practice, and how to bargain for competitively priced insurance.  The profession of midwifery, as it pertains to out-of-hospital birth, would move forward much more effectively if the leadership could address the issues that are causing the problems, instead of wallowing in self-pity for tragedies that are created by negligent midwives themselves...and then further going to great lengths to deny any responsibility whatsoever.  

Instead, the Michigan Midwives Association continues to support not only negligent midwives, but criminal midwives too.

     "Support midwives who are facing prosecution for doing the everyday work that we 
     do: Ireena Keeslar lives in Indiana, but practices also in Michigan, attending 
     homebirths and births at her freestanding birth center. She was charged with 
     practicing nurse-midwifery without a license and is in the pre-trial stage at this 
     point, with her next court day pending. Her legal expenses are likely to be 
     considerable. You can donate to her cause by sending her paypal at or by writing her a letter of encouragement at 
     7570 E 750 N, Howe, IN, 46746."

It would appear that "warrior" midwives, are even above the law.  Even though the state of Indiana requires a state issued license to deliver babies as a midwife, you can just let it lapse, and your supporters will be asked to support your irresponsible actions by funding your court battles.  Better yet, just come on across the border and set up a birth center in Sturgis, MI because we have no regulations here.  

Where are the midwives that are asking people to contribute money to the families who have to battle in court to hold negligent midwives accountable...midwives who file for bankruptcy multiple times over  wrongful death lawsuits?  Where are the midwives funding medical care and treatment to injured babies across the state, whose injuries are the result of pure negligence?  Why do these families turn to the court system?  Well, because no one else will hold midwives practicing this way accountable, least of all their own professional organizations.  Nope, the mentality is: must protect the sisterhood, must protect the "harassed, sued, interrogated, targeted" midwives because so obviously when a baby dies, it's the midwives who are mourning.  

The focus must shift to protecting families.  

This not a "witch hunt" ladies, it's a call to action.  We want you to step up to the plate, to offer us something better that we can depend on.  We want you to be educated, responsible, professionals who work hard to keep us as safe as you can.  If you are unable to redefine yourselves, to raise your expectations, to better admit your faults along with your successes, to practice ethically & safely, then our state has an obligation to set it's own guidelines to keep people safe.  We want better for Michigan families.


  1. I think they have all read that deplorable document "From calling to courtroom" which teaches and endorses ways to mislead and deceive authorities and clients. They believe midwifery is a dying art, that it must be protected at all cost - and this is why they absolutely cannot see what they are doing is wrong. They belong to a subculture who hold to a set of beliefs much like a cult - and they suffer from martyrdom and persecution complexes when they are called to account.

  2. Thought you might be interested in how homebirth is done "properly"!
    Kind regards - keep up the pressure! It will be making a difference.

  3. I'd assumed you had to dig deep to find that plea for monetary help for the midwife facing criminal charges. But no, it's right on the homepage of the MMA website.


    I have no words. Michigan appears to have a real special group of 'professional' midwives, I tell ya.

  4. Try again with that link!