Ask the Provider
Diane Larson, APRN, CNM, CNP, Midwife at Stellis Health - Monticello Clinic
What is the role of a Midwife?
Question: I recently heard that midwife care is now available in Monticello. What role does a midwife play in the health care of a woman?
Answer: Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs) are primary care providers for healthy women from adolescence through menopause. While they are best known for their role in assisting women during pregnancy, birth, and the postpartum period, they also perform yearly physical screening exams, perform procedures such as insertion of Nexplanons and IUDs for long acting birth control and focus on health and disease prevention.
CNMs are trained in both nursing and midwifery and they are licensed to work in hospitals. In most cases, they have a bachelor's degree in nursing along with a master's degree or doctorate in midwifery. Additionally, CNMs are nationally certified by the American Midwifery Certification Board.
Women often choose midwives because they are looking for a provider who specializes in normal, healthy pregnancies and births with minimal intervention. This is the area of expertise for midwives. Midwives are less likely to intervene in normal labor through induction or cutting an episiotomy. They also encourage women to be up and moving during labor. Whether or not a woman chooses to have an epidural, a midwife will support her decision and also suggest alternatives for pain such as soaking in a tub, listening to relaxing music or sitting on a birthing ball. Midwives are also trained to detect abnormalities and collaborate with obstetricians when needed to help ensure the safest labor and delivery.
An important aspect of the role of a midwife in a woman's health care is that they take time to listen and really get to know their patients so they can empower them with and knowledge and confidence. Midwives draw on their own patience and understanding and combine traditional skills with current best practices to safeguard a healthy, normal birth and help new moms fulfill their personal birth plan wishes with a natural approach to care.
For more information on midwife care in Monticello, call 763-295-2921.