What is a Midwife?
A midwife is a health care professional who provides health services to women, most often during pregnancy, labor, and birth. The Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs) at Meriter are registered nurse who has advanced education in midwifery, including obstetrics and women's health.
Our CNMs regularly provide annual physicals and screenings; natural options for symptom management; and perinatal care, including low-intervention birth options like water births. This team of experienced midwives is a strong part of the Meriter family, delivering about 10 percent of all babies born at the hospital each year. The certified nurse midwives practice in collaboration with obstetricians, gynecologists and other members of an interdisciplinary team.
Approach to Care
The certified nurse midwives offer a holistic approach to primary health care needs for women. The midwives are registered nurses who have completed additional education and training in women's health and maternity care.
For maternity clients, nurse-midwives provide individualized care and attendance throughout pregnancy, labor, birth and the postpartum period. The nurse midwives have completed their Master's degrees and are skilled at recognizing risk factors requiring consultation or referral to obstetricians or other specialists.
The certified nurse midwives view pregnancy and birth as normal, healthy events in the life cycle. They believe that every individual has the right to safe, satisfying health care, and to be treated with respect. They value the strength and integrity of a woman's body. They encourage women to be active participants in maintaining their health during pregnancy, birth and throughout their lifespan.
They respect the diversity of beliefs, values and expectations of their clients and will assist them in personalizing their care. While the provision of physical care is an important aspect of nurse midwifery, emotional and social support, as well as education, are essential components of health care. Education and support is what empowers women and their families to be actively involved in making decisions that affect their own wellness.