Greetings from the NACPM Chapter community!
We have many exciting Chapter updates including our new Google+ community platform for connecting and resource-sharing among chapters, our anti-racism and equity chapter collaboration calls, and updates from several different states about the work they’re doing. Our chapter network is ever-growing, and the map below shows that in addition to our 14 active chapters, midwives from 24 additional states have expressed an interest in chapter formation. Some of those states have begun the formation process, and others are simply exploring the possibility within their local communities. We’d love to connect you with others who are interested in chapter formation in your state! Please reach out to Susan at email@example.com for more information. Our goal is to have 20 active chapters by 2018, and we would love for your state to be one of them!
Chapter Collaboration Call Equity Series
The October collaboration call “Toward Equity-Grounded State Midwifery Leadership: A Conversation” marked the beginning of the Chapter Collaboration Call Equity Series. Registrants received preparatory materials to read and explore before the call, which helped everyone to enter the conversation with some common ground. NACPM board member, Keisha Goode, Ph.D., punctuated her compelling presentation with opportunities for personal reflection in response to guiding questions. Participants submitted their thoughts, comments, and questions through the chat feature, and these were then used to spark live discussion at the end of the call.
Keisha’s presentation was deeply inspiring, and we had more participant comments than we could bring forward in the allotted time. What a great problem to have! Our hope was for this call to be the start of an ongoing conversation among NACPM Chapter leaders and members about how to create equitable organizations, and we were not disappointed. The December Collaboration Call on Monday, December 11 at 1:30 pm ET, will be a continuation of this conversation using the questions and comments submitted by participants as the framework for our discussion.
We also heard a specific request from call participants for NACPM to create an anti-racism toolkit for chapters to reference as they lay the groundwork for their organizations. We will be working to prepare an initial draft of this toolkit for review and input on the December call. We are learning so much about what it means to prioritize equity and anti-racism systemically, organizationally, and individually, and we have so much more to learn. We would love for you to join us in this learning. The quarterly Chapter Collaboration Calls are unique opportunities for chapter members and leaders to dig deeper into our shared vision and values. Chapter members even enjoyed a sneak peek at the NACPM Vision and the Midwifery Landscape Briefing Papers this summer. Please reach out to Susan at firstname.lastname@example.org to be connected to your local chapter or for more information about forming a chapter in your state.
Each NACPM chapter is unique, and it can take time to create the right moment for chapter formation and to discern the focus for newly formed chapters. Midwives in Idaho and Alaska have officially begun the work of chapter formation, and in Connecticut, after years of discussing chapter formation, the midwives voted unanimously in favor of starting a chapter after Mary Lawlor went for a “Home Visit.” These visits are an opportunity for NACPM leadership to hear from midwives about their hopes and vision for a chapter and to share with them about the national picture for CPMs and the role that state chapters can play in unifying our profession.
Would you like to plan an NACPM Home Visit in your state? We love learning about each state’s unique landscape, answering questions, and sharing about the national perspective and unfolding directions for Certified Professional Midwives. Reach out to Susan at email@example.com to schedule your Home Visit.
Corina Fitch, CPM, secretary of the Florida Chapter of NACPM reports “This has been a ground breaking year for Florida midwives due to legislative threats that we were faced with as well as a need for reorganization. The founding of our Florida Chapter was in direct response to both of these situations. FL NACPM focused its efforts this year on educating the midwifery community about the many benefits of joining the chapter, outreach for membership, and fundraising for our lobbyist fund. We labored collaboratively with the Midwives Association of Florida to put together a state midwifery conference in August.
We look forward to increasing membership in the coming year, along with continued fundraising efforts and providing opportunities for continuing education for midwives.”
Over the course of two years, we got to know a lot about each other, about our respective philosophies of care, our particular skills, our concerns, our strengths and vulnerabilities, and most importantly, what we could agree upon. Those areas of agreement became a bill to license CPMs and CMs in Maine, that successfully passed through the legislature in 2016, overcame a Governor’s veto, and successfully returned to the Legislature in 2017 to gain funding for enactment.
This past Summer, we reflected upon the value and experience of our unique “Home Birth Collaborative”, and made a decision together to move on to another challenge. What would it take to form a Perinatal Collaborative for Maine?
Maine is one of five states in the country with no Perinatal Collaborative. Several states have strong PQCs, with active multi-stakeholder participation and robust funding sources. But very few, if any states, have invited CPMs to be at the table from the beginning. Here is an opportunity for a public health approach that holds moms and babies at the center of its vision, and considers data and quality improvement projects across the entire continuum of choice a family might make regarding place of birth and preference for provider.
Who are the stakeholders? They are the clinicians in all settings and the patients they serve. They are hospital administrators, public health departments, and emergency medical services. They are governmental agencies, and public and private health and liability insurers. PQCs are funded by public and private grants and donations, state budgets, hospital “tax”, federal monies, and support of all kind from state and federal CDC. PQCs rely on the collection of relevant data, and use it to effect meaningful change across provider groups and care settings. We believe that midwives in every care setting have a lot to offer.
As a kick off to our Maine PQC, we held a Symposium on October 21, 2017. We invited attendees from across the stakeholder spectrum, and designed a program to excite people about the possibilities. The day was kicked off with Dr. Alan Picarillo, a neonatologist, who had been involved with the formation of a Neonatal QC in both New England and Virginia. He talked about the necessary steps and stakeholders, and particularly about the value of forming a culture of transparency around data, as a key to stimulating change in practice.
Ethicist Frank Chessa at the Maine Symposium
The afternoon focused on looking at the Maine state birth data, and discussing the concept and value of forming a PQC for Maine. Going forward, we identified several projects worthy of focus, and people were interested in joining the Steering Committee.
April Kline, CPM, President of Ohio NACPM reports, “This year, we have focused on the first of our objectives as a professional chapter, offering CEU opportunities on nutrition and other relevant topics. We have also built a trusted circle of midwives for regular peer review which is offered at every quarterly meeting as well as by phone as requested. We are pleased with how our first year has unfolded and look forward to a new year to grow our chapter and continue our good work.”
North Carolina and South Carolina NACPM CPM Chapters hosted their second annual Carolina Birth Junkies Retreat this summer. Christine Strothers, CPM, board member of the North Carolina Association of CPMS (photo on the right), and Lori Gibson, CPM, President of the South Carolina Chapter of NACPM (photo on the left), served as co-organizers for this event. Lori described the retreat as “another amazing weekend full of eagerness to delve deeper into Midwifery, relationships and self.” In addition to the educational workshops, they added recreational activities this year including kayaking, red tent temple, and a couples session on how to keep a marriage strong while doing birth work.