Congratulations Donna Barisich, CNM, MS on being named a 2021 ACNM Fellow!
Ask a Midwife
Have a question for a midwife? Looking for tips for a healthy pregnancy, wondering about the latest research on women's health, or have questions about midwifery? Whatever it is, submit it here! Each month a question will be selected. Read this month's response and browse through past entries.
Meet a Midwife
Why did you become a midwife? My journey into women’s health and midwifery began when I was pregnant with my first son. My experience drove me toward a career that would allow me to improve the care women receive, not only during pregnancy, but also for gynecological care. Historically, the medical profession has been complicit in the oppression of vulnerable populations, including women and people of color. As a women’s health provider, I view each encounter as an opportunity to educate women about their health and empower them to make safe, evidence-based medical decisions regarding their care. Along the way, I have developed a passion for gynecological care, such as peri-menopausal and menopausal treatment, in addition to caring for pregnant women. I have been practicing full-scope midwifery since 2013.
What do you wish women knew about pregnancy and birth? Pregnancy and birth is a normal physiologic process. Most women are able to birth without the need for intervention; but it is important to birth under the watchful eye of a trained provider who can recognize for signs of danger to mother or baby. I want women to be sure they feel safe with their provider and that they feel listened to. It is never too late to transfer to another provider during pregnancy, if you do not feel safe and heard.
What was your own birth experience like? My first child was born when I was young and had not been educated in regard to women’s health and childbearing. I placed my trust in my provider but did not receive evidence-based care. With my second pregnancy, I sought out midwifery care, and had a safe, empowering birth experience. My third child was born after I had already been practicing midwifery for several years, and I was cared for by my wonderful friends and colleagues.
If you could change one thing about women’s health care, what would it be? I would love to see more collaboration among the various types of health care providers as well as among the various medical specialties. Too often, safe medical care is compromised by an unwillingness to collaborate with other professions.