Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Birth Survey in Maine!

Did you know that The Birth Survey now has information about Maine??! The survey results are searchable by doctor/midwife and hospital/birth center/homebirth. The best way to find information for our state is to type in your zip code, and select the distance in miles you are able to travel.

Currently, there are only a few reviews for some of our local hospitals and some of our local doctors and midwives. Of course the information is still very well worth looking at! But how awesome would it be if it were even more complete?!! If you've had a baby in the past three years, and would like to help expecting families make an informed decision about the care they choose, consider sharing your experience! The survey only takes about thirty minutes to complete and is completely anonymous.

I would particularly encourage anyone who has birthed at our state's only independent, free-standing birth center (The Birth House), or with a homebirth midwife to share their experience, because there aren't any reviews yet, and I know there have been some fantastic experiences!

I would also particularly encourage anyone who has had care that they were not happy with to complete a survey. I think the tendency can sometimes be to "not make trouble" or take some of the blame for a negative experience on ourselves, and therefore decide not to share the experience... but I think it's crucial for as many women as possible to complete surveys, whether it's to recommend a care provider or location, or to express dissatisfaction with a care provider or location.

"Our goal is to give women a mechanism that can be used to share information about maternity care practices in their community while at the same time providing practitioners and institutions feedback for quality of care improvement efforts."

"We are dedicated to improving maternity care for all women. We will do this by 1) creating a higher level of transparency in maternity care so that women will be better able to make informed decisions about where and with whom to birth and 2) providing practitioners and hospitals with information that will aid in evaluating and improving quality of care."

Objective 1
Annually obtain maternity care intervention rates on an institutional level for all fifty states.

Objective 2
Collect feedback about women’s birth experiences using an online, ongoing survey, The Birth Survey.

Objective 3
Present official hospital intervention rates, results of The Birth Survey, and information about the MFCI in an on-line format.

Objective 4
Increase public awareness of differences among maternity care providers and facilities and increase recognition of the MFCI as the gold standard for maternity care.

I am so excited by this project, and the difference it could make for birthing mothers and their new babies! I urge you to participate by either spreading the news, or completing a survey!!

I'll leave you with this inspiring thought from Christiane Northrup:
"Imagine what might happen if the majority of women emerged from their labor beds with a renewed sense of the strength and power of their bodies and their capacity for ecstasy through giving birth. When enough women realize that birth is a time of great opportunity to get in touch with their true power, and then they are willing to assume responsibility for this, we will reclaim the power of birth and help move technology where it belongs--in the service of birthing women, not as their master."
Christina @ Birthing Your Baby
Independent Childbirth Classes for Central Maine
New Mothers Support Circle

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