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History of the National Association of Certified Professional Midwives

The National Association of Certified Professional Midwives (NACPM) was formed in order to provide Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs) with a professional organization to support the development of the profession.  In 2000, the CPMs and Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs) in Massachusetts put forward ground-breaking legislation proposing the formation of a board of midwifery that would govern both groups of midwives in the state.  While the need for a professional organization for CPMs had been growing since the mid-1990s, the request by the Massachusetts legislature for Standards of Practice specific to CPMs to support this legislation prompted the incorporation of NACPM in 2000.  An interim board of directors called for a Task Force Meeting in September, 2001 to discuss the future of NACPM and CPMs were invited to join NACPM as charter members.

Over the next two years, discussion took place within the midwifery community about whether CPMs were best served by an independent NACPM or by addressing the needs of CPMs through a section of the Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA).   By the fall of 2002, NACPM had decided to remain as an independent organization and the first elected Board of Directors was installed.

The NACPM Standards Committee and the Standards Advisory Committee were formed in the fall of 2002 and initiated a process to develop Standards of Practice for NACPM that gave all CPMs the opportunity for input into this important document.  The Essential Documents, including the Standards of Practice, were adopted by the NACPM Membership in 2004.

The work of NACPM places emphasis on increasing women’s access to the care of midwives by removing barriers to the practice of Certified Professional Midwifery, and NACPM continues to develop its capacity to advocate for Certified Professional Midwives and to support the growth of the profession.

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