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A closer look at midwifery

Last Modified: October 04, 2020

Women & Children


Today marks the beginning of National Midwifery Week (October 4 – 10), and to celebrate, we wanted to recognize this dynamic group and the supportive care they provide. We invited Alisa Felke, Certified Nurse-Midwife, to offer a closer look at the profession and what these team members bring to mothers seeking a more holistic approach to their birth plan within the safety of a hospital setting.

What is a midwife?

At Parkview, all the midwives are Certified Nurse-Midwives, meaning we have completed our master’s degree in Midwifery beyond our training as registered nurses. We have experience in multiple areas, as well as in labor and delivery. We have completed hundreds of hours of classroom and clinical training, including a nationwide board examination through the American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB), to achieve this certification. We follow standards of care outlined by the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM).

What it means to be a midwife

As midwives, we care for women throughout their lifespan. While we are probably most well-known for our care of women during pregnancy, labor and birth, midwives are also educated to care for women from puberty to menopause. We can prescribe medications, order labs and imaging, perform physical exams and conduct procedures for a variety of medical conditions.

Midwife means “with women,” illustrating the relationship we have with our patients is a partnership. They are woman-centered and involve shared decision making. One difference you will notice about midwives is the amount of time and effort we spend educating our patients. Women have so many choices to make regarding their care, so we want them to understand those options. We also explore the risks and benefits of those options while making sure you have plenty of time to ask any questions you may have. During pregnancy, we discuss what is typical, what you can expect to experience in the coming weeks and months, and how to start preparing you for motherhood

Collaboration is key

As midwives, we know when to get a physician involved. While we do specialize in the care of the healthy “low risk” woman, we can and will refer or collaborate if the situation warrants us doing so. We have OB/GYN and high-risk Maternal-Fetal Medicine care at our fingertips. We concentrate on low intervention options, but we also monitor patients closely in an effort to catch any complications early. We treat childbirth as a normal life event, meaning we don’t look for a problem where there isn’t one, but with that said, we have a keen eye and won’t hesitate to act quickly to safeguard the well-being of both mom and baby.

To find out more about midwives or to decide if Parkview’s Midwife Program is right for you, please visit our page or call 877-PPG-TODAY.

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