So I attended. I had to leave as soon as it was over, so I'm sorry I didnt get to chat if anyone else was there.
I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised by this guy. The midwives from MatSu Midwifery and he presented that they are working together so they can offer the best care possible for the women they serve. He worked in Great Brittan for a while where the system is set up so midwives do the care for most women and the OBs are there for major complications and c-sections.
They have set up something similar here. If a woman is in the care of the midwives and needs to transfer in labor, she is transferred to him. He is having "meet & greet" appointments with the midwife clients in their last trimester. It's mainly so they can get to know him ahead of time and be assured that if a transfer is necessary, they will have someone on the hospital side who is going to be caring and respectful (and not punish them for attempting a home/BC birth in the first place).
He is also working on the policy at the MatSu hospital for waterbirth. He says they have a tub that is rarely used for even a laboring mom, never for birth. They have to have a policy in place first and no other practicioner has had any interest in it anyway. In the meantime, he said he has a patient who wants a waterbirth and he's planning on attending her birth at the birth center
I asked about his thoughts on VBAC. His comments on the risks were factual, not fearmongering and mentioned the sucess rates were pretty good. He emphasised that he liked to have a relationship with his VBAC patients, not just have someone show up at the hospital that he's never met. His comfort level seemed to be at no more than 2 prior cesareans (or maybe that was more hospital policy?). He said he had to be at the hospital the entire time a laboring VBAC mom was there, but his office is also at the hospital. The one thing he said that had me
a little was that the hospital doesn't have 24/7 anesthesia on site so if you wanted them there hanging around on site, you'd get an epidural. I wasn't sure if that meant he'd try to push an epidural on a VBAC mom or what.
It sounds like good news for women of the valley. The cynical side of me suspects he's a good actor, it's some huge bait & switch where the midwives start transferring women for more minor things, but really, I think you have some practitioners that see the advantages for both patients and business of working together instead of separate and adversarial.