Professional Development Series

Maternal stress and timing of deliveryPreliminary cortisol data from Puerto Rico and the mitigating role of midwifery care

1.5 MEAC CEs (0.15 CEUs) Available

Thursday 24, 2020

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Maternal stress is associated with nearly half of preterm births globally, however, existing research has yet to determine the best way to measure and sufficiently understand this relationship to be able to devise effective interventions to reduce preterm birth. To gather data for this research, maternal hair cortisol samples were collected across the childbearing year in addition to other maternal stress measures. Horan and Cheyney describe and discuss the possible implications of this data, the role of midwifery care in mitigating maternal stress, and directions for future research. This data was collected as part of a larger, collaborative research project with midwives, doulas, maternity care staff, and physicians in Puerto Rico. Midwifery students also served as research assistants on during this phase of the project. This research is an important piece of the puzzle in demonstrating how midwifery may serve as a model for mitigating maternal stress and reducing preterm birth.  

1908033_new_faculty_headshotsHolly Horan, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Alabama and a birth and postpartum doula. Holly’s research focuses on maternal stress and birth outcomes in Puerto Rico and scaling up maternity care services in Alabama. Holly is a remote member of the research team for the Community Doula Program, a Medicaid-funded program providing doula services to priority populations in three counties in Oregon. She also serves on the Region II Perinatal Advisory Council in Alabama.




Missy B&WMelissa Cheyney PhD, LDM is Associate Professor of Clinical Medical Anthropology at Oregon State University (OSU) and a community midwife. She co-directs Uplift—a research and reproductive equity laboratory at OSU, where she serves as the Primary Investigator on more than 20 maternal and infant health-related research projects, including the Community Doula Project. She is the author of an ethnography entitled Born at Home (2010, Wadsworth Press), co-editor with Robbie Davis-Floyd of Birth in Eight Cultures (2019, Waveland Press), and author or co-author of more than 60 peer-reviewed articles that examine the cultural beliefs and clinical outcomes associated with midwife-attended birth at home and in birth centers in the United States. In 2019, Dr. Cheyney served on the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine’s Birth Settings in America Study and in 2020 was named Eminent Professor by OSUs Honors College. She also received Oregon State University’s prestigious Scholarship Impact Award for her work in the International Reproductive Health Laboratory and with the Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA) Statistics Project. She is the Editor-in-Chief of the journal Birth: Issues in Perinatal Care and the mother of a daughter born at home on International Day of the Midwife in 2009.

NACPM Sixth Virtual Annual Membership Meeting 2019

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NACPM Fifth Virtual Annual Membership Meeting 2018

Tuesday, January 8, 2019, 4-6 pm, ET

Our Leadership Team will be sharing higlights and what we have learned over the past year during our Fifth Virtual Annual Meeting. We will include a report and discussion on the 2018 CPM Symposium, the Bigger Table Fund Scholarship Awards as well as our organizational commitments and programs.

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Meeting Agenda and Links

Midwives – What You Need to Know about Becoming a CPM and Completing the Bridge Certificate 

1.5 MEAC CEs (0.15 CEUs) Available

January 17, 2018

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Dynamic new opportunities have emerged in recent years to grow the CPM profession to truly meet the needs of the childbearing population.  The landscape is changing and it will be increasingly important for midwives to obtain the national CPM credential and complete the NARM Bridge Certificate.  This webinar will provide you with all the information you need to make the decision and take action for your future and the future of the midwifery profession.

Tanya head shot crop smallTanya Khemet Taiwo, CPM, MPH, and Co-President of NACPM will explore reasons why midwives should become CPMs, including state licensed midwives that aren’t required to hold the national credential.  She will share her perspective on the changing landscape and the implications for people of color.  


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Ida Darragh, CPM, LM and Executive Director of NARM will describe the ins and outs of the Midwifery Bridge Certificate, as well as information about the experienced midwife route and how state-licensed midwives can, in most cases, easily become CPMs.  By the end of Ida’s presentation, the Midwifery Bridge Certificate will no longer be a mystery to you.

Ida has been a midwife in Little Rock, Arkansas, since 1980. She travels to many states teaching workshops related to midwifery practice and the politics of midwifery, and represents NARM when speaking to state and national legislators and policy makers, and at conferences on regulation and licensure. On the local level, she serves on the Midwifery Advisory Board of the Arkansas Department of Health and in various roles in the Arkansas Association of Midwives.

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Vicki Penwell, CPM, LM, MSM, MA  and Founder of Mercy in Action Midwifery School will share why she is so committed to the Midwifery Bridge Certificate as a tool for advancing the profession and increasing people’s access to midwives that she developed courses that fulfills all the requirements for the certificate, supports midwives with the Bridge Certificate application, and takes her courses around the country so midwives can access them in their own communities.

Vicki  has championed the vision of USMERA and the NARM Midwifery Bridge from the beginning, and was a frontrunner in offering live seminars and on-line classes that meet the 50 accredited hours requirement of the NARM Midwifery Bridge. Vicki  created a popular four day intensive seminar, “Expect the Unexpected:  Midwives Handling Complications in Out-Of-Hospital Settings”; this Bridge approved course taught all over the USA year-round gives interactive and hands-on training for midwives on successfully handing complications in the Antepartum, Intrapartum, Postpartum and Newborn Periods.  Mercy In Action has several on-line courses that are also approved by NARM for the Midwifery Bridge, and all of their trainings are accredited by MEAC. Vicki helps midwives understand the Bridge process and fill out Bridge paperwork during the seminars she teaches, and encourages all CPMs who certified under the PEP process to Bridge while this opportunity exists.

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Whether it’s addressing equity in the profession, achieving federal recognition and state licensure, or expanding reimbursement and employment opportunities, CPMs are on the move.  NACPM believes that the opportunities for CPMs have never been greater: to serve more people, to be more relevant to the changing needs and demographics of the childbearing population, to be of more service in eliminating racial inequities in care, and to infuse the systems of care with CPM knowledge, experience, and values.  Mary Lawlor, CPM and Executive Director of NACPM, will describe how recommendations made in NACPM’s briefing papers Midwifery Landscape and Future Directions will position midwives and students to meet this exciting emerging future: midwives who are not yet CPMs should become CPMs now; midwives who been trained in non-accredited programs should fulfill the Midwifery Bridge Certificate; and anyone wanting to become a CPM should carefully examine their options for education in light of this changing landscape.



NACPM Fourth Virtual Annual Membership Meeting

Friday, December 15, 2017

Our Fourth Virtual Annual Meeting on December 15, 2017 provided our members with highlights and what we have learned over the last year, including a report on Cross-Racial Shared Leadership, the ICM Congress in Toronto, our upcoming 2018 CPM Symposium, our recently published Briefing Papers, as well as updates on Chapters, the NACPM Practice Committee, and more.

2017 Annual Meeting


NACPM Vision and the Midwifery Landscape — Briefing Papers  

October 11, 2017

1.5 MEAC CEs (0.15 CEUs) Available

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Exciting new opportunities are emerging to grow the midwifery profession to truly meet the needs of the childbearing population, to achieve state licensure for all CPMs, to improve reimbursement and expand employment options. At the same time, changes for CPMs are causing concern and worry about what will happen for midwives ‘on the ground” – a phenomenon common among professions as they develop and adapt to changing circumstances.

Mary CropJoin Mary Lawlor, NACPM Executive Director, and Jo Anne Myers-Ciecko, Strategic Consultant to learn more about “CPMs: Midwifery Landscape and Future Directions” a set of briefing papers and recommendations developed by NACPM. Intended to inform and support midwives by providing answers to your questions and suggestions about how you can prepare to take advantage of rapidly emerging opportunities for CPMs, this webinar will include an orientation to the briefing papers and how they might be used in study groups, state meetings, midwifery schools and practices.


Jo Anne Myers-CieckoWe also want to engage participants in a conversation about NACPM’s recommendations and share our excitement about supporting a strong, robust CPM workforce that truly is prepared to meet the needs of childbearing people in our country.
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Live from the 31st Triennial Congress of the International Confederations of Midwives

June 19, 2017

Wishing you were able to attend the ICM Congress in Toronto but couldn’t make it happen? Members of the NACPM delegation brought the Congress to members with up-to-the-minute news during a live webinar broadcast from Toronto. This was an opportunity to get a feel for the people, the issues, and the stories as they happened.

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NACPM Third Virtual Annual Meeting 2016

The Third Virtual NACPM Annual Meeting on November 10, 2016 gave our members an opportunity to learn more about our Cross-Racial Shared Leadership model and featured topics as the Chapter report, State legislation, our work on the federal and international level, NACPM’s collaborative relationships, our Professional Development and Support as well as reports on our finances, fundraising and NACPM staff. Please review the recording below.

Annual Meeting 2016

NACPM Annual Meeting 2015

When NACPM hosted our first virtual annual meeting in 2014 ,members told us they appreciated having the chance learn more about all facets of our work and to hear from everyone on the Board of Directors and Staff. Based on this feedback, we hosted our second virtual annual meeting on November 12, 2015. For news of our activities, accomplishments, challenges, and plans for next year, please view the recording below.

NACPM 2014 Annual Meeting

NACPM members, stakeholders and others curious about the work of the professional association participated in our first-ever virtual Annual Meeting on November 20. This presented members with an opportunity to meet the NACPM Board of Directors, staff, consultants, and volunteers; to learn about the accomplishments, challenges, projects and collaborations of 2014; and to find out how members and stakeholders were helping to shape NACPM priorities for 2015. Please view a recording of the meeting below.