Central Maine Medical Center
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300 Main Street, Lewiston, ME 04240 | 207-795-0111
Women's Health - For everyday in a woman's life...

What is a Midwife?

Midwives Have a Long Tradition of Assisting Women Through Childbirth

Midwifery is an internationally recognized profession with practitioners throughout the world. The history of midwifery is a long one, stretching back to ancient times. In the United State, the concept of the nurse-midwife was introduced in 1925; it was modeled after the nurse-midwives that had long been practicing in Great Britain. Just as the name says, these healthcare professionals are educated in nursing and midwifery.

The model of health care practiced by nurse-midwives focuses on women and newborns. Care emphasizes individualization, education and health promotion. Nurse-midwifery care includes preconception counseling, care during pregnancy and childbirth, normal gynecological services, contraceptive care and care of the peri- and post-menopausal woman. Their goals are to prevent problems and to assist women in developing and maintaining healthy habits.

Nurse-midwives view pregnancy and birth as normal events until proven otherwise. They provide women with information and encourage them to determine their own care, based on that information. Nurse-midwives closely monitor pregnancies and labors so they can detect problems early and provide the appropriate care required. Patients are respected as individuals who have the right to make informed choices.

The nurse midwives at CMMC are nationally certified by the American College of Nurse Midwives, licensed by the State of Maine, and hold a minimum of a master's degree.

To learn more about midwifery, visit the American College of Nurse-Midwives.

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