The system of maternity care in the United States is in a crisis. Medical professionals are conflicted between philosophies of birth practices leading to polarization of opinion and an allegiance to a specific set of birthing methods, thus stunting the development of standardized practices. This issue directly affects women who are giving birth in the current medical model that incentivizes high-risk surgical interventions and birth practices and provides little to no reimbursement for preventive care measures. Women have a limited sense of agency due to the fragmentation and lack of access to knowledge of all viable birth options. A major shift needs to occur in the ...view middle of the document...
These areas include performance measurements of clinical professionals, re-alignment of reimbursements and incentives, evaluating “disparities in access” (S27) to birthing alternatives, redistribution of government funding, educating consumers, and standardization of health information technology. With this consensus of synergistic reform it has the capacity to instill opportunities for change within the culture of maternity care.
The sources listed at the end of the article suggest two things. For the existing triumvirate (obstetricians, nurse practitioners, and midwives) already rooted in specific ideologies but aware of the significance of change in the system offer a multidisciplinary collaboration of the disciplines. In terms of the future of education of maternity care, sources offer an interdisciplinary approach where students engage in each discipline - obstetric care, nursing, and midwifery – to create a unity of knowledge lost without such a collaborative, reflexive model. With these suggestions in mind, the authors’ perceptions of an interdisciplinary approach are construed as limited. The intent on integrating alternative birthing practices is interspersed within the dominant discipline of obstetrics. Most of the sources cited within the article can be found in journals of Obstetrics and Gynecology with only a few from journals of women’s health and Midwifery.
The authors of “Blueprint for Action” are comprised of “key informants” that acted as the Steering Committee for Childbirth Connection’s 90th Anniversary Symposium (childbirthconnection.org). Childbirth Connection conducted interviews of these lead thinkers across the U.S. healthcare system to gather perspectives of the current quality of maternity care. Many of these leaders and innovators are directors as well as executive officers of agencies and institutions dedicated to healthcare research, improvement, and quality.
The two main authors are Childbirth Connection’s Director Maureen P. Corry, MPH, and Carol Sakala PhD, MSPH, who also wrote Milbank Report Evidence-Based Maternity Care: What It Is and What It Can Achieve. This report directed Childbirth Connection’s symposium and stakeholder work groups’ efforts to improve maternity care quality. The authors seem to be credible and reliable in their efforts to seek optimal maternity practices...