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Top Questions About Midwifery

Find quick answers to commonly asked questions about midwifery

What is a midwife?

A midwife is a practitioner with expertise in women’s health and female reproduction. They offer support and care for women to have safe pregnancies and recoveries after childbirth.

What is the difference between a doula and a midwife?

The difference between a doula and a midwife is doula’s do not have training as healthcare providers. Their training is to support birthing people through the process of pregnancy, labor, and the postpartum period providing emotional, psychological support, and direct assistance.

What kind of training do midwives receive?

Midwives receive different certifications at different education levels. Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs), Certified Midwives (CMs), and Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs) all obtain training and/or degrees in nursing or midwifery that make them capable of fulfilling the midwifery role. 

Can you have a doctor and a midwife?

Yes. Midwives and doctors often work together to provide collaborative care, which has proven beneficial. Studies show that having a doctor and midwife results in better outcomes for mom and baby.

Where can midwives practice?

Most midwives practice in hospital settings but can practice at home or in a birthing clinic.

How do you pay for a midwife?

Check with your medical insurance. Many insurance carriers cover midwifery care. Additionally, check your Health Savings Account (HSA) to find out if midwifery services are reimbursable. Another option is to add midwifery services to your baby shower registry. Also, ask your midwife if payment plans are possible.

How long does it take to become a midwife?

The maximum time to become a midwife is 8 years for a Certified Nurse Midwife (CNMs). It requires a 4-year Bachelor's Degree, 1 year of experience, and 3 years in a midwifery program. However, as a "direct-entry" midwife (individuals who go directly to midwifery school without training first in nursing), there is less schooling required and is completed through accredited midwifery schools and programs.

What are the benefits of a midwife?

Midwives provide many different health care services, such as gynecological exams and labor and delivery care. The benefits of a midwife include fewer cesareans, use of anesthesia, decreased infant and maternal mortality, reduced risk of preterm birth, and increased lactation and breastfeeding.