Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Ina May Gaskin on Rising U.S. Maternal Mortality Rate and More

Democracy Now!'s Amy Goodman interviewed famous midwife Ina May Gaskin. They talk about the rising U.S. maternal mortality rate and midwifery in the U.S. in general. You can watch the interview here, where there are links to download the audio file and read the transcript as well.

A few choice quotes:
We don’t have feedback to our obstetricians, to our hospitals or maternity wards, to find out what we’re doing wrong and why the United States is one of four countries in the world where the maternal death rate is going up, not down.
Insurance has incredible power now, power that it didn’t have 70 years ago. It’s the reason that doctors aren’t learning to do breech deliveries anymore...it’s one of the huge reasons that we have very few midwives in this country. We need 120,000 more easily.


  1. I didn't listen to the interview, but just wanted to comment that reading Ina May during both of my pregnancies was so helpful, as was working with a homebirth midwife (even though both of my babies ended up being born in the hospital). I have no idea how I would have survived the birth and death of my first baby without my midwife, and how I would have managed the pregnancy and birth of my second without her! Hurrah for midwives!

    1. I have to say, I've never had any interest in having a homebirth. That being said, I do support women having choices in how and where we birth our babies. Ina May's work has really paved the way for the acceptance of an alternative to the medically managed hospital birth.