Arizona Association of Midwives (AAM), with the support of community members and everyday families of Arizona will rally in front of the Arizona Department of Health Services, at 11am Thursday, November 5, 2015 to demand that the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS), along with the State of Arizona elected officials, including Governor Ducey, stop the bureaucratic persecution of, and instead, publicly support the Midwives of Arizona in providing safe preconception, prenatal, labor and birth, and postpartum care to the families of Arizona. The rally will coincide with a special announcement by AAM.
Arizona midwives want to provide safe and ethical, evidence-based care to the growing families in our state. ADHS has said they just want compliance with their rules. ADHS relies on said rules to coerce and force people into mandatory medical care, mandatory testing, and mandatory vaginal exams, mandatory hospital transports for non-emergent or contained emergency situations.
IF a midwifery client declines any of these, they are no longer legally allowed to be cared for by an Arizona Licensed Midwife. Not in that moment and not for the rest of their pregnancy or postpartum. Midwives have protecting their clients from these mandates and the response from ADHS has been to threaten, harass and persecute.
Midwives are being persecuted and harassed for providing safe, evidenced-based and consensual care to their clients. Since the new rules and regulations for Licensed Midwives came into effect in 2013, 22 midwives of the 74 currently licensed in AZ have been sanctioned by the ADHS for any number of “offenses.” These offenses include respecting their client’s ability to opt out of testing, procedures, hospital transfers or for continuing to see their clients after resolved complications.
ADHS current interpretation and enforcement of midwifery rules is in direct conflict with the midwifery model of respecting clients rights to low intervention practices and informed choice.
This is shameful and illegal!
AZDHS and the State of Arizona need to stop persecuting midwives and need to start embracing them as a means to reduce infant and maternal mortality in the state by way of providing thorough and professional maternity care at home and outside of the hospital.
The Arizona Association of Midwives is taking action on behalf of all growing families in the state to ensure that their healing hands are not tied with red tape when it comes time to welcome new life into this world.
Please join us at the rally, come hear the announcement, stay informed!
See our FaceBook invite for more details!
To read my personal account visit blog post Battle with AZDHS.