THE COMPLETE BOOK OF MIDWIFERY by Barbara & Joan Rattner Heilman Brennan


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Brennan, a former Labor and Delivery head nurse who pioneered the midwifery service at Roosevelt Hospital in New York, tells about the enormous success of that program and others modeled on it. Operating from the hospital with the support of its obstetricians, five specially trained midwives work with carefully screened patients who want, most of all, pregnancy and childbirth on their own terms. The midwives offer comfort, advice, an extra pair of hands; they stay with the mother throughout the labor and delivery; they favor little outside intervention--drug use is minimal, episiotomies rare. The women, an unusually well-educated and well-informed group, come looking for the personalized treatment that many doctors have been unwilling to provide, and the consensus is overwhelmingly in favor of the midwives. As one mother said, ""No matter how you do it, it's hard work. You might as well be in charge of yourself."" Once illegal, midwifery is now practiced in all but three states. Brennan writes with relaxed assurance--she loves her work--and a waiting list attests to the popularity of her service. A proud, informative overview. (List of other US Nurse-Midwifery services appended.)

Pub Date: Feb. 21st, 1976
Publisher: Dutton