Archive for 9 June 2009

Help the Big Push for Midwives!

*Please note: the deadline for this has been extended until the end of the day! Please send your e-mail in TODAY!*

Hello friends,

As some of you may already know The Big Push for Midwives just had an amazingly successful week in Washington DC. We had many meetings with key legislators and have an opportunity to be added to an extended list of Medicaid providers in the draft health care bill in the Senate. But we need your support!

Scroll down for a template letter to Senator John Kerry along with suggestions about what to say. Senator Kerry’s staff need to hear from their constituents (anyone from MA). I will be putting a packet together so please send letters directly to me copied into an email.

Thursday, June 4th is the deadline for sending me your letters.

Letters should be sent to:

Brielle Epstein,
Director of Federal Advocacy
The Big Push for Midwives Campaign

Subject: Medicaid and Certified Professional Midwives (or your choice of something related)
Please insert the date, your name and address here followed by:

The Honorable John Kerry
United States Senate
218 Russell Bldg.
Second Floor
Washington D.C. 20510

Dear Senator Kerry:

First Step:
I am writing to discuss the importance of including Certified Professional Midwives, who are specially trained as experts in out-of-hospital maternity care and deliver babies in private homes and in freestanding birth centers, in health care reform.

Next Step:

Pick one or two points to include in your own words:

Research consistently shows that low-risk women planning to deliver their babies at home under the care of Certified Professional Midwives experience outcomes equal to low-risk women who deliver in the hospital, but with far fewer costly and preventable interventions, including a five-fold decrease in cesarean section.

Babies delivered under the care of Certified Professional Midwives have significantly reduced rates of prematurity and low-birth weight, two of the leading contributing factors to racial and ethnic disparities in birth outcomes and to the costs associated with long-term care.

The state of Washington reports a savings of $3.1 million dollars over a period of two years to the state Medicaid system when women experiencing healthy, low-risk pregnancies give birth with licensed midwives instead of in the hospital.

The recent Milbank Report conservatively estimates savings of $2.5 billion dollars a year if the cesarean surgery rate is brought down to 15% in the U.S.

David Anderson, Professor of Economics at Center College with a specialization in the costs of out-of-hospital maternity care calculates that including CPMs and of out-of-hospital birthing services in Medicaid and other plans would result in savings of $9.1 billion annually, while actually improving outcomes.

Certified Professional Midwives s are the only providers specially trained in out-of-hospital birth in the event that hospitals become unsafe for healthy pregnant women during a disaster.

Briefly talk about your own experience with a midwife if you are a consumer

Final Step:

Ask Senator Kerry to support the addition of “Certified Professional Midwives” to the expanded list of Medicaid providers listed in Section IV, page 24 of The Senate Finance Committee’s policy document entitled, “Description of Policy Options, Expanding Health Care Coverage: Proposals to Provide Affordable Coverage to All Americans” and thank him for his time and consideration. Please use the exact language in bold so that it is very clear where we are asking to be added.

[Full Name, Contact Info, Etc.]

9 June 2009 at 3:50 pm Leave a comment

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June 2009