In “Midwives can alleviate the maternal health crisis. Here’s how,” The Hill reporters Lauren K. Hall and Elise Amez-Droz argue that bringing back midwives is an essential maternal health care initiative. Right now, the United States has the worst maternal mortality rate of developed nations and has a host of issues threatening delivery care. Medicaid covers 42% of births a year in the United States, but its poor reimbursement rates incentivize providers to opt out of the program. Because of low provider pay and COVID-19 overwhelming hospitals, 7 million Americans live in areas with limited access to maternity care, putting their health in danger. Hall and Amez-Droz argue that the United States should remove regulations to midwives practicing autonomously by splitting Medicaid reimbursement for birthing care, making it easier for non-medical providers to cooperate, and roll back some licensing laws around midwifery. Black mothers, who face the highest rate of maternal mortality in the United states, are increasingly seeking midwives during livebirth. Additionally, research from Canada and the United Kingdom shows midwives improve safety for low risk women. Most importantly, by removing the need for hospital visits, midwives, the government can improve fiscal access to maternity care and alleviate stress on an already overwhelmed medical system.

Image from Beverly Hospital. 


Lauren K. Hall and Elise Amez-Droz, O. C. (2022, November 12). Midwives can alleviate the maternal health crisis. Here’s how. [Text]. The Hill.

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