Nurse midwives

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Updated: 1/14/2003 2:33 pm
A certified nurse-midwife or C-N-M is a registered nurse with at least one year of specialized training in obstetrics (ob-STET-tricks). He or she is licensed by the state and recognized by the American College of Nurse-Midwives as qualified to provide health care to mothers and babies during a normal pregnancy, labor, and delivery. A C-N-M typically works in conjunction with a regular obstetrician (OB-stuh-TRIH-shun). Some benefits of using a nurse midwife include lower cost without sacrificing quality care, and often, more personal service. Nurse-midwives tend to see fewer patients, and they can spend additional time discussing issues such as family planning, breast-feeding, fetal development, discomforts of pregnancy, and labor-delivery plans. The main limitation of utilizing this type of care is that a nurse-midwife is only trained to manage healthy pregnancies. A midwife may co-manage, with a physician, pregnant patients who have underlying medical problems. If complications occur in an otherwise normal pregnancy, a midwife is trained to recognize such problems and will probably refer you to a physician for further care. For more information regarding nurse-midwives, consult a health care provider.

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