This is really not such a good day for doctors!

Opposition over the AMA and ACOGs attempt to make it illegal for women to hire anyone but them (doctors) or birth anywhere but thier hospitals (can you say 'restraint of trade' boys and girls?) is gaining speed as women realize what this could mean. The discussion ranges from women possibly being 'investigated' for accidentally birthing anywhere but an institution, to separation of mom and baby as parents face jail because their baby fell out on the way to a hospital, to having our children ripped away from us and placed in foster care if we choose to birth with midwives, even though we've researched our options and the science backs our decision?

Ultimately, those are unlikely scenarios. However, what WILL happen, should this AMA resolution pass, is that the highly trained midwives who could assist parents would face prison for helping parents birth safely, thus assuring unsafe birthing situations. As I see it, AMA is willing to risk your baby's life to 'prove' homebirth is unsafe...by making it unsafe. Sort of like 'proving' that all twins are early and small by removing them by cesarean at 36 weeks.

Outraged bloggers like those at Our Bodies Ourselves and The Rivers Report are speaking up and organizations like Citizens for Midwifery, International Cesarean Awareness Network, Lamaze are providing facts. If you read the message boards on the topic, doctors and midwives from around the world are stunned at this move by the AMA. England is trying to INCREASE the numbers of homebirth because it is safer and less expensive to birth at home with a trained midwive who is a guardian of normalcy.

So, there's that going on, and then today's news carries this headline: Doctors' Group Plans Apology For Racism
Ouch. Women are not the only people the AMA has repressed. Is now such a good time to be pointing that out?

Yesterday, the headline spoke to the patients doctors also try to bully with Hospital bullies take a toll on patient safety:Bad behavior by doctors and others undercuts morale, leads to errors

Really, with all these doctors behaving badly, is it any surprise that babies are getting smart and arriving so easily and quickly so they might avoid being abused! This VIDEO (sorry, I couldn't embed it) was on MSN this week. In it, one couple tells of their 'baby's choice' birth to an 8 lb. baby boy . Babies are falling out more and more often, but what made it news was that this ws the third birth in less than a week that 911 dispatchers 'delivered over the phone'.

Well, that was the way the news told it. Actually, while the dispatcher was credited with this safe delivery, the fact of the matter was that it would have happened exactly the same with or without her. She did nothing except give bad advice that her 'strict protocol and training' prepared her to give; that being to "...have her push hard to get the rest of the baby out". Hard pushing is causative in perineal tearing, shoulder dystocia, and a whole host of other issues one would want to avoid, but not only that, it's not necessary. According to one study by authors Brancato, Church & Stone published in the Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic and Neonatal Nursing, Vol. 37, Issue 1, 2008:

CONCLUSIONS: Significant positive effects were found indicating that passive descent should be used during birth to safely and effectively increase spontaneous vaginal births, decrease instrument-assisted deliveries, and shorten pushing time.

"Passive descent" means "no hard pushing".

But this isn't the only bad advice dispatchers give. One story I saw on the Today Show had the dispatcher telling a 12-year old boy to take the shoelaces out of his shoe to tie off the umbilical cord. Tetanus lives in dirt; dirt is on a 12-year old boys shoes for sure; the one certain place deadly infection can enter a newborn? The cut cord!

I do not doubt in the case of illness or injury 911 operator are heroes rushing in to save the day. But birth is neither an illness nor an injury. At best in these cases their assistance is pointless and these babies are surviving in spite of their bad advice.

But let us suppose for just a moment that this wasn't so. If 'phone birth' works so well, what does that say about highly trained surgical specialist (obstetricians) attending 90% or more of normal healthy births?

If enough healthy, nice sized babies choose to come this fast and easy, maybe eventually women will realize that birth is safe. Pizzas, not babies, are delivered, and only a mother births her baby.

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