What is a Midwife?

Midwifery is the ancient tradition of women attending each other
around the time of birth. Today in the United States, it has evolved to artfully combine the old knowledge based on natural, holistic healing with that of the modern, Western medical perspective. The relationship between midwife and client is non-hierarchical and founded on trust and empowerment.

The Midwives Model of Care includes:

  • monitoring the physical, psychological and social well-being of the mother throughout the childbearing cycle;

  • providing the mother with individualized education, counseling, and prenatal care, continuous hands-on assistance during labor and delivery, and postpartum support;

  • minimizing technological interventions; and

  • identifying and referring women who require obstetrical attention.

The application of this woman-centered model of care has been proven to reduce the incidence of birth injury, trauma, and cesarean section.

(©1996-2005, Midwifery Task Force, Inc., All Rights Reserved)

International Definition of a Midwife

The World Health Organization defines a midwife as someone who . . . must be able to give the necessary supervision, care and advice to women during pregnancy, labour and the postpartum period, to conduct deliveries on her own responsibility and to care for the newborn and the infant. This care includes preventative measures, the detection of abnormal conditions in mother and child, the procurement of medical assistance and the execution of emergency measures in the absence of medical help.

She has an important task in health counseling and education, not only for the woman, but also within the family and the community. The work should involve antenatal education and preparation for parenthood and extends to certain areas of gynecology, family planning and child care. She may practice in hospitals, clinics, health units, domiciliary conditions of in any other service.

Midwifery in Washington

Midwives attend births in a variety of settings, including homes, freestanding birth centers, and hospitals in accordance with the standards of practice of the State of Washington.

Washington State recognizes two separate paths for professional midwives:

  • Licensed Midwives (LMs) complete an accredited midwifery program and are licensed by the State of Washington.

  • Certified Nurse-Midwives (CNMs) are educated in the two disciplines of nursing and midwifery, are certified by the American College of Nurse-Midwives, and are licensed by the State of Washington.

Phone: 877.869.6105
Fax: 360.563.2662
midwife@snohomishmidwives.com FACEBOOK

“It was the most amazing and empowering thing that I have ever done. Women's bodies were made to be able to birth without all the modern medical intrusions.”


Snohomish Midwives   877.869.6105   midwife@snohomishmidwives.com