to have Courage....In Family Life, In Spirituality, In Health, In Living Simply

I'm on a journey...... as we all are. Learning, remembering, re-discovering about health, spirituality, relationships, emotions and the mind.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Midwifery in Nova Scotia : I'm Irked!!

Ok, let's say I'm a bit perturbed. Ticked-off. The government and the medical field are looking worse and worse in my eyes almost daily. They are imposing and controlling where they don't have true authority. The unfortunate thing is that it seems that citizens are wanting authorities to decide for them. I think the boundary has been over-stepped. For those of us who acknowledge our own responsibility for our lives, we just want to be able to make different decisions for ourselves. But our options are limited. Our freedom is not freedom.

Yes, I need to be praying.

I am shocked that such a recent change in laws here in Nova Scotia would be even more limiting to midwifery. They are degressing here. Such a shame.

Here I am, living on the south end of Cape Breton. The population of the island is roughly 100,000 people. Fairly large island approx 10,300 sq km. It's a beautiful island, rugged and wild. But disappointing in the midwifery department.

So, the nearest hospital to us is about a 35 min drive; it's considered a 'bandage' centre. The 'real' hospitals are in Sydney (1 hr 10 mins north of here on a terribly windy car-sick kinda drive, almost unusable during the winter), or Antigonish on the north end of the mainland (about 1 hr 20 mins south-west of here).

In March of this year, the Nova Scotia government enacted legislation regulating midwifery. There are now 3 'test' sites throughout (?)the province (NONE for Cape Breton) where they have hired midwives to supposedly provide 'midwifery' care. One of the test sites is in Halifax, one is in the South Shore District, and the last is Antigonish. But get this!!! These midwives are only permitted to do hospital births. No homebirths. NO HOMEBIRTHS!!!

They say they "have integrated midwifery services into their existing primary maternity health care teams." That's simply hospital care. Ob/gyns, doctors, the whole hospital-based mentality people who see disease and accidents and trauma all day long, and of course are more likely to see labour and delivery as more of the same. Another opportunity to 'fix it', even if it doesn't need fixing but rather it needs to be left alone.

So for the 100,000 people on Cape Breton the only midwife available is on the mainland, and is tethered to the hospital. So there is no homebirths allowed. None for the province.

I find that so ironic. They pass legislation to regulate midwifery, and what do you get? A hospital birth. To me, that is just undermining the whole philosophy of midwifery, and one of the main reasons why women want a midwife in the first place. It isn't just the longer appointments you get with a midwife versus the rushed 10 minutes with a Dr. It's the perspective that pregnancy, labour and birth are natural events, not a sickness or disease, nor an accident, nor an emergency waiting to happen. It's a natural occurence in life. There is no reason to routinely treat it as something dangerous.

Question for You: Do you know if midwifery is legal in your area? Do you even care about midwifery?

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