Dr Helen Shallow presents on the politics of midwifery. A timely reminder of the struggles midwives have had to introduce entitlements and choices for mothers, now commonplace, like birthing balls or waterbirth pools. It is hard to imagine that these were contested and resisted.
A look around the world at Brazil or Mexico where caesarean section have become the absolute norm for birth in hospital reminds us how models of childbirth are very politicised either by the medical establishment or in other countries by religious believe where women still die in childbirth because husbands and families will not allow a male doctor or nurse to assist with a birth. Maternity and midwifery in the UK is undergoing huge change with a new government plan published on 30thDecember 2018. With reorganisation comes the question of who is in charge.
Dr Helen Shallow reminds us that a midwives job is to keep the woman in charge – and that is always a political challenge.
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