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Home birth midwives/options in Casper, WY area?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
This is not for me, it's for a friend. She lives in Casper, WY and has been unable to find any midwives close to her. Closest ones are all 3 hrs away. She found one (or maybe two?) that said they would come to her, but she became uncomfortable with the idea of them being so far away, so right now she is planning on a hospital birth with a doula, although she really would like to birth at home.

I'm wondering if anybody knows of any midwives that maybe she just hasn't found? Thanks in advance!
post #2 of 14
I wish I did!!! I couldn't find any options near me (I'm 2.5 hours north of Casper) at all (since, midwifery is technically illegal here since they cannot be licensed to practice prenatal/postnatal care)... so I'm travelling 2.5 hours to the north of me (up to Billings, MT) to see a midwife there!
post #3 of 14
The closest licensed midwives to Casper are about three hours away. CNM's can legally practice in Wyoming, but CPM's cannot.

I used a midwife from SD (over 3 hours away) for my first birth and she made it in plenty of time. Though I had a friend and the midwife missed the birth, but the baby was born just fine. There are MANY MANY women who have utilized the services of the midwives who are three hours away and as far as I know, the vast majority of them are in attendance at the birth.

A bill has been introduced to change the law, and if it is voted in CPM's would be able to be licensed in Wyoming as of July 1, 2010.

The hospital in Casper has a very high c-section rate and I have heard terrible things from women and their subsequent doctors about the surgical procedures used. The hospital in Douglas is MUCH better. I'd not risk my health and the health of the baby going to the Casper hospital. THe chances of a baby coming within three hours of first stage labor are slim. Penelope, Heidi or Sandra would be a much better bet for the health and safety of the mother and child than the wyoming medical center.
post #4 of 14
I was hoping I'd see some good suggestions here for OB, CNM, or midwife -- my cousin had an unplanned UC with her first, and is moving to the Casper area -- I'd like to be able to recommend an NCB-friendly OB/CNM to her since I think they are looking to start TTC pretty soon.

If the midwife bill passes, she'd be absolutely comfortable with a homebirth midwife (since she's already more or less BTDT) -- here's hoping that is her option if the care is that poor there!

We give birth quickly in our family - three hours is too long for her to wait for a midwife. Her first took less than an hour from "I'm in labor?" to baby born. And my second took about that long, too.

For more information on the bill and its progress, see this thread:
post #5 of 14
Just wanted to dispell the bad comments about the Casper hospital. It is a great place to have a baby and there are amazing doctors that practice there. The Dr's there know their stuff and truly care about their patients. Does Douglas have a nicer unit..maybe I've never seen it. But in Casper there are amazing physicians who specialize in OB and if you have special requests for your birth experience they are very willing to do what needs to be done to have that happen. Call them, set up an interview! See who you like best and go from there. There are 3 female Dr's and 2 male Dr's so you can choose who you are most comfortable with and who you feel will be the best fit for your delivery.
I wish everyone could have an amazing experience in a hospital but I am realistic and know that doesn't always happen. There are Doula's in Casper and they are there for you through your whole pregnancy and come into the hospital with you and work well with the staff on the floor.
I would be interested in knowing who the Dr(s) were for those who didn't have a good experience. I believe the relation ship between patient and DR is a major factor in how someone feels their birth experience went. Also, the nursing staff plays a huge role. one can always ask for someone else to care for them.
I am glad you have had good experiences at home. But please don't speak ill of a place you have not been.

Also I understand there is a midwife practicing in Central wyoming.
post #6 of 14
I am not sure I am supposed to write names of doctors on this forum. I was transferred by my Certified Nurse Midwife to the Wyoming Medical Center. We called in ahead and had requested that I be assisted with vacuum suction and/or forceps - so our choice and we did request specific services. We were refused the services asked for and scheduled for a c-section while the baby was IN THE BIRTH CANAL!!! They were going to pull the baby back through the cervix and deliver via c-section. The nurse who was to put my IV in missed the vein 4 times - yes 4 times, and then apologized because she was having such a hard time maneuvering the needle with the new fake fingernails she had had put on for a cruise she was going on. After the doctor refused to assist as I had requested, we asked for another doctor. Unfortunately at 4am there was only one doctor so we were SOL. Like with any hospital just because you choose a doctor for OB prenatal care, you get whoever is there once you get to the hospital. Anyhow, I delivered the baby naturally because a c-section was UNNECESSARY!

But, the thing is I do not want to put the WMC down because of my Bad experience. Satisfaction rates and c-section rates speak for themselves.

There are three nurse midwives delivering babies at home in central Wyoming, but they live about 2-3 hours away, and as OP has said that is too long to wait.

Oh and good news, the midwifery bill passed and the governor signed it into law in March!! So hopefully in July the new licensing board can start accepting applications for CPM's to be licensed to practice in Wyoming!
post #7 of 14
I would agree that was not a good experience. I can figure the situation you were in beings that there are Dr.s that are "box call" they are not specifically OB they are family practice Dr.s that also do OB. They take people that come in who do not have an OBGYN already. I am very sorry to hear of your experience with the nurse, I would hope that if you had a complaint or concern about her or even the care you recieved that you made it known to the manager. So many times when we have issues ourselves we are told to write it down and send it in so something can be done about it.

Yes satisfation rates and c-section rates do speak for themselves.
However, the trend nation wide is more c-sections. It is said that by 2012 something like 70+% of births will be c-sections. There are people out there that for personal reasons want a c-section! It baffels me why but they do so they are adding to the rate as well.
Satisfaction rates seem to go up and down depending on time of year, if its busy, if there's construction and personal experiences. WMC is currently remodeling and they are adding a mother baby unit. Evidently it will be very nice and updated with private rooms for mothers and their families.

I am 100% for a mom having the birth experience she wants because I feel that makes mom and baby the happiest! however I have seen situations happen where lives were saved becuase of interventions. But ultimatley it is up to the mom and her wishes whether it be a home or hospital birth.
post #8 of 14
Welcome to Mothering, alerOBnurse! Check out all our forums, this is an active and vibrant community.

I think the nation-wide trend towards more c/s isn't a justification for any particular hospital/OB having c/s rates above the 10-15% recommended by WHO. It's unfortunate that the "everybody else is doing it too!" defense is being used so often about c/s rates - when the increased risks which come with any c/s (even the medically necessary ones) especially in subsequent pregnancies, are so much higher than vaginal births.

It's good to hear that you feel the hospital in Casper provides good care; I hope that, if my cousin has to use the hospital there, she agrees. Having had a very positive homebirth experience, I suspect that if she has a negative experience there, she will turn to a planned UC (unless a good midwife moves her practice to the Casper area).
post #9 of 14
Wow, and I thought the Cheyenne hospital had a bad reputation!
How long will it take to form the board for CPMs? What's a realistic expectation?
For now I will see a midwife in Colorado - I'd rather have an unassisted birth at home than giving birth in the Cheyenne Regional Medical Center. I especially cannot tell whether refusing eye ointment is even legal in WY - it says you need a religious waiver?! Before I have to deal with such idiotic stuff, I'll deliver in Fort Collins.
post #10 of 14
The board has been appointed. I think CPMs can begin applying for licenses July 1st?

This is who is on the board, per the information on the Wyoming For Birth Options information:
Barbie Burrage - Colorado
Bath Karberg - Colorado
Patricia Schwaiger - Montana
Michelle Bartlett - Idaho

Karen Wendt - Lander

Angela Biggs - Gillette

Shandra Emrich

I'm hoping that there are some underground CPMs who are already in place, who come forward. I'm afraid it's going to take quite awhile before we get new CPMs here, established. There's been some discussion about setting up a scholarship fund or something to help get more CPMs through their educations and able to start serving Wyoming families.....
post #11 of 14

Hello.  I just moved to Casper, WY 3 weeks ago and discovered I'm around 5 weeks pregnant.  I'm wondering if there are any updates to this issue of no midwives in the area.  I would rather attempt an unassisted birth at home than trust a hospital with my birth experience.  My last birth (9/2009) was a water birth at home (in Texas), and I'm hoping to have this type of birthplan here in Casper, WY.  Any advice would be so helpful and greatly appreciated!  Thanks ladies!

post #12 of 14

Hi, I am 8 weeks, and am going to be thoroughly investigating in the next couple of weeks.  If you are in a hurry.... Karen Wendt and Heidi Stearns both do homebirths in Casper.  Im helping Heidi with her website right now - http://www.sweetwatermidwifery.com 


I'm going to be looking to see if there are any Casper based midwives to make life easier and not have to travel so much for prenatal care.  But I've had two homebirths in Casper so far, so it is possible.  Just a bit of travel for prenatal care.. 

post #13 of 14

There are a few midwives in the casper area, one CNM and some CPMs in training.  I'm not sure if they've applied for licensing yet.  A good place to find providers would be on facebook - Wyoming for Birth Options.

post #14 of 14

I checked with the midwifery board and they sent me their whole list which consisted of two CPM's who've been "licensed" in Wyoming.  One is in Northern Colorado and the other is in southern Montana.  Not sure if either will attend births in Casper. 

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