Choosing A Midwife

family-newThis site offers you a directory of midwives licensed in New Jersey. You can read about midwives, link to their websites, and find resources about homebirth and midwifery care to support your vibrant pregnancy and birth.

What is a midwife?

A definition from the Midwives Alliance of North America: Midwives are the traditional care providers for mothers and infants. Midwives are trained professionals with expertise and skills in supporting women to maintain healthy pregnancies and have optimal births and recoveries during the postpartum period. Midwives provide women with individualized care uniquely suited to their physical, mental, emotional, spiritual and cultural needs. Midwifery is a woman-centered empowering model of maternity care that is utilized in all of the countries of the world with the best maternal and infant outcomes such as The Netherlands, United Kingdom and Canada.

 

About Midwives’ Credentials in New Jersey

New Jersey offers licensing for several midwifery credentials: CPM, CM & CNM.


What is a CPM? (Certified Professional Midwife)

A Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) is a knowledgeable, skilled and professional independent midwifery practitioner who has met the standards for certification set by the North American Registry of Midwives (NARM) and is qualified to provide the Midwives Model of Care. The CPM is the only midwifery credential that requires knowledge about and experience in out-of-hospital settings. (read more at narm.org)


What is a CM? (Certified Midwife)

Certified midwives are individuals who have or receive a background in a health related field other than nursing and graduate from a midwifery education program accredited by ACME. Graduates of an ACME accredited midwifery education program take the same national certification examination as CNMs but receive the professional designation of certified midwife. (read more at midwife.org)


What is a CNM? (Certified Nurse Midwife)

Certified nurse-midwives are registered nurses who have graduated from a nurse-midwifery education program accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education (ACME) (formerly the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM) Division of Accreditation (DOA)) and have passed a national certification examination to receive the professional designation of certified nurse-midwife. Nurse-midwives have been practicing in the U.S. since the 1920s. (read more at midwife.org)


What’s the difference?

All New Jersey licensed midwives have undergone both clinical and academic training and have met rigorous standards set out by the NJ Board of Medical Examiners. For midwives certified as Certified Midwives or Certified Nurse Midwives, their training has been university based and usually includes a graduate degree. For midwives certified as Certified Professional Midwives, their training is community based, which means they’ve done extensive study under experienced midwives and have graduated from a MEAC-accredited academic program as well. CPMs are the only type of midwife whose training is specifically focused on out-of-hospital birth. See narm.org for more information about CPMs and their professional preparation. CPMs and CMs are sometimes referred to as direct entry midwives because they didn’t first become nurses, but went straight to the study of midwifery. Ask your midwife about her education – she surely will have stories to tell!


waterbirthWe invite you to do your own research about midwifery care and home birth. A few places to start:

  • Home Birth Study, Jan 2014 – many home birth midwives participate in an ongoing research project called MANAstats, and they’ve just published an analysis of their clinical outcomes
  • NJ Birth Network – a consumer advocacy group for NJ families, specifically focused on implementing Mother Friendly Childbirth Initiative in hospitals across NJ
  • MANA – the Midwives Alliance of North America
  • ACNM – for more information about Certified Nurse Midwives and Certified Midwives
  • NACPM and NARM – for more information about Certified Professional Midwives
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