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Homebirth legal in the following states: NY, NJ, PA, CT?????????????? - Page 2

post #21 of 53
In GA DEMs can not legally attend homebirths, but it's a misdeamenor crime if they get caught. Worst case scenario is that they have to pay a fine. Still, I'm sure nobody wants that, or to stir up trouble that could lead to stricter laws and penalties.

The law here is that a liscense is required to attend hombirths. There is no way for a DEM to get a legally recognized liscense. So, in theory, if an OB, FP, or CNM wanted to attend homebirths they can. They won't be allowed to work in any hospital that I know of as well as attending homebirths so they have to choose all one or all the other. I do know one CNM in Middle GA who does attend homebirths, and only homebirths. I *think* she'd like to have an OB to work with who could do backup and order tests when needed/wanted, but there is no such animal available, or if there was they would loose their hospital priveledges if they did.

Sorry, that's not commuting distance from NYC, but with all the talk of laws, I thought it was an interesting example. I grew up in NJ, a trainride away from "The City." It was a great life. We had a farm, but could go in for shows, museums etc, and for a while Dad worked in the city too. For the past several years he's commuted the opposite direction, to Clinton NJ.

If you like the country, and don't mind riding a train to work, try Califon NJ. It's way out on the end of the Eerie Lackawana train line, and not being suburbanized as quickly as many of the other communities I know and love are. PM me and I can put you in touch with a really good realtor.

Kiley
post #22 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by meagansroses View Post
I believe Pa is also lenient on the vax thing as long as you have a religious reason/note. Otherwise, in order to attend pa public school they have to be vaccinated. At least that is what our previous pediatrician said before we stopped going to him. ( he wouldn't take no for an answer on vaxing my baby) Good luck.
not true - the religious exemption in pa is VERY loosely worded, essentially encompassing a philosophical exemption.
post #23 of 53
Eastern PA (think poconos and Lehigh valley) I think HB are legal - but good luck finding a HB MW. None that I know of in Monroe, Pike, or Lehigh counties.

I had a WONDERFUL MW though - she operated a birth center before the hospital refused to renew her lease. She practices indepently, with a backup OB who is NOT located in her office. She makes the choices on your care with you, and only consults him if there is a real need to do so. She was phenomenal - my prenatal and postnatal care were amazing - I switched to her at 28 weeks and it was the best decision I ever made. I got checked by her once I was in labor and then sent to walk and eat LOL She didn't want me going to the hospital until the last possible minute. The hospital - she has 2 birth center style rooms and offers water birth, no routine IV, etc. She stayed with me the entire time, and was amazing when DS had shoulder dystocia. I could not have asked for better care. She cared about me as a person - not just a walking womb (how I felt with the other practice) - she asked about how I felt emotionally, mentally, how DH and I were doing, making sure we were still enjoying sex. LOL During my PP visit she gave me a backrub while we talked about everything. I just want to cry at the thought of her not catching the next one - I have seriously considered getting prenatal care here and flying back to PA to have the next baby with her again. I can't say enough wonderful things about her.

Laurice Dunning, CNM
www.valleymidwives.com
Midwives and Associates in Allentown PA

Monroe county (stroudsburg and surrounding) and Lehigh Valley (allentown, bethlehem, etc) are FULL of commuters to the city - it is about 1-1.5 hours commute. via rt 80 from Monroe or via 78 from Lehigh. It is a nice area to raise kids, affordable compared to NY or NJ, and an easy commute. PA is a crunchier area too....
And I can recommend AWESOME family doc who is not only supportive but against vaxing (he has written books and offers chelation therapy to help vax damage!), has a natural remedies pharmacy on site, specialize in food and enviornmental allergies - and is just wonderful. There are several docs in the group, all great. I miss them sooooooo much! It is the Woodlands Healing Research Center. In Quakertown, just outside of Allentown.
www.woodmed.com
I liked Dr Buttram and Dr Kelley the best - and so did DS. Dr Buttram is older, founded the practice and does all the research/fights against routine vaxing - he takes MUCH longer with appts (DH complained but I liked it). Dr Kelley is awesome but she is really quick, sometimes hard to get a question in there, but once you say I have some questions, she is attentive and thorough.

As for Vax exemptions - PA is super easy - just print out the religious exemption form from vaclib, fill it out and sign it- done! Unlike Florida where I had to jump thru hoops at the health department. I actually had my PA printed out and ook it with me to the hospital - just had to put DS's name, and date on it. it was easy to refuse stuff at the hospital we used too.

if you have any questions about that area in PA - just PM me
post #24 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by zoebird View Post
btw, my parents live in the Poconos. they're about an hour, hour and fifteen commute from NYC, no traffic. two hours in traffic. they live near east stroudsburg/stroudsburg. here's a listing from the web site that is near them:

Pocono Midwives & Associates, LLC
5005 Rt. 611
Stroudsburg, PA 18360
(570) 421-9876
Andrea S. McClaren, CNM

Good luck!
This was 15 minutes from me and I drove an hour to get to Laurice!!!!! From friends/coworkers of DH that used her - she is NOT a MW. One friend ended up hating birth to the point that she refuses to consider having another child, despite "no complications" - the other was ordered to have an epidural by this MW and ended up with a CS that IMO was really avoidable....Plus Pocono Medical Center is a ChopShop - if you don't want to go to Allentown, then most women drive the 45 mins the other way into Jersery to Hackettstown to a wonderful MW there who also does waterbirths in a hospital....

Also there is a fantastic farmers market (with organic meats and veggies) right in Allentown. Where I spent half my labor and every Saturday morning
post #25 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by naturegirl7 View Post
I had a WONDERFUL MW though
i second that - laurice is fantastic
post #26 of 53
There's quite a few restrictions on what kind of homebirths NJ mws can attend. I think NY is better. Not sure about CT
post #27 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by rmzbm View Post
Absolutly legal in NY & midwives there are PLENTIFUL! (I wouldn't wanna live there though, I escaped years ago...)
Not so plentiful, depending on where you live. I live in Binghamton and we have no homebirth midwife within an hour drive. My midwife came down from Ithaca. Maybe there are more in NYC and other downstate areas. There ARE midwives, but just not many homebirth midwives.
post #28 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Juvysen
Not so plentiful, depending on where you live. I live in Binghamton and we have no homebirth midwife within an hour drive. My midwife came down from Ithaca. Maybe there are more in NYC and other downstate areas. There ARE midwives, but just not many homebirth midwives.
: There aren't any homebirth midwives near me. It took me forever to find one.
post #29 of 53
Do any of you know if NY midwives can attend an HBAC? I can't seem to get an answer on that one.

Liz
post #30 of 53
i homebirthed twice in MA, and once in RI. good experiences all (except for the pain of labor, of course). very doable.
aj
post #31 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by mom3b1? View Post
In GA DEMs can not legally attend homebirths, but it's a misdeamenor crime if they get caught. Worst case scenario is that they have to pay a fine. Still, I'm sure nobody wants that, or to stir up trouble that could lead to stricter laws and penalties.

The law here is that a liscense is required to attend hombirths. There is no way for a DEM to get a legally recognized liscense. So, in theory, if an OB, FP, or CNM wanted to attend homebirths they can. They won't be allowed to work in any hospital that I know of as well as attending homebirths so they have to choose all one or all the other.Kiley
I just wanted to point out that the law in all 50 states is written in such a way that if you want to attend births as the primary care provider, you need a license. In some states you need a license to practice medicine, in others you need a license to practice midwifery. But the way the laws in all states are written is that if you attend births and provide any of the services associated with being a primary birth attendant, then you need a license.

Otherwise you're subject to criminal charges of practicing medicine without a license and to additional criminal charges, including manslaughter, reckless endangerment and the use/possession of controlled substances. In some states, like GA cited above, it may be a misdemeanor to practice midwifery without a license. However, because there is no way to investigate/discipline midwives in states without licensure, any time a mother or baby dies or is injured on a midwife's watch, the only recourse is to bring in police, prosecutors and the criminal courts to determine a) if the midwife was at fault and b) if so, what her punishment should be.

When midwives are regulated by the criminal courts as opposed to by a civil administrative agency, then not only do parents lose control over the process, but it's left up to people with no knowledge whatsoever about midwifery, about evidence-based maternity care or about appropriate sanctions for "wayward" healthcare providers to investigate a case and determine the best means for remedying the situation.

Katie Prown
Legislative Chair
Wisconsin Guild of Midwives
post #32 of 53
Pa: Yes. It's legal. Visit www.pahomebirth.com. It says something about only CNM's being legal, but CPM's will also attend, and charge you an arm and a leg to do it! Only thing is, CPM's aren't covered by insurance and you can't sue if something goes wrong. Not usually a problem for HB'ers though.
post #33 of 53
CPMs aren't legal in PA. The law specifically states that you have to be a CNM in order to practice midwifery in the state. CPMs still practice there, but they're subject to a range of criminal charges for doing so. PA has a long history of prosecuting midwives, and Judy Wilson is still awaiting trial there for involuntary manslaughter, practicing midwifery without a license and endangering the life of a minor.

CPMs who practice in states without licensure are also subject to criminal charges for the use/possession of controlled substances. Carrying/using Pit and other medications without the legal authority to do so is a violation both of state law and of federal laws governing the possession of controlled substances.

Katie Prown
Legislative Chair
Wisconsin Guild of Midwives
post #34 of 53
I'm in NY on Long Island. To my knowledge there are only 2 homebirth midwives on the island and I don't think either of them will do a HBAC
post #35 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrskennedy View Post
Only thing is, CPM's aren't covered by insurance and you can't sue if something goes wrong. Not usually a problem for HB'ers though.
While you may not win (or even go to trial) you most certainly CAN sue a CPM if something goes wrong with a birth.

Valerie
Illinois
post #36 of 53
There are several homebirth midwifery groups all over NJ that practice legally. Many are CNMs, but CPMs are legal in NJ as well. My last homebirth was with two CPMS, and my insurance paid.

As for restrictions on homebirths, many of them are limits to any midwifery practice, not just homebirths. High blood pressure, preeclampsia, VBAC etc. I have heard that there are midwives who will attend HBAC, but it's probably only rumor.

CNMs and CMs are the only legal midwives in NY. If you are downstate, you should have no problem finding a homebirth midwife. NYS also has some law (that I'm not exactly clear on) where they have to pay for birthing choices, including HB. That was how I forced my insurance co. to pay for my HB. They are based in NYS and so must follow state law and my CPM was licensed where I live. The didn't pay the whole fee, but it was a victory nonetheless.
post #37 of 53
Actually there are CNMs, CPMs, DEMs, and I believe even a few LMs in PA. Basically they are permitted to practice, but if something goes wrong then they can be subject to prosecution...usually by someone with a beef against CPMs and DEMs.

I live in SC/SE PA and we have plenty of midwives here and are fighting to keep them. There is such a religious aspect to it in this area that women would use them regardless of law.
post #38 of 53
The only LMs in PA are CNMs. The law specifically states that in order to practice midwifery in PA, you have to be a CNM. The very fact that they can be prosecuted if something goes wrong means that they are not legally "permitted" to practice.

In states where CPMs are legally permitted to practice, they don't face criminal charges and prison time if something goes wrong. Instead, they face a disciplinary hearing before a licensing board and potential loss of their license to practice, but they do not risk becoming a convicted felon as a result of practicing midwifery.

PA is not unique in terms of the religious aspect to home birth midwifery. There are women in every state who choose home birth for religious reasons, but the state does not distinguish between midwives serving in religious communities and those who are not. Unless you have a statute that exempts midwives from practicing without a license for religious reasons, all midwives in the state are subject to the same laws.

Judy Wilson's clientele was primarily Amish/Mennonite and yet she was arrested and is awaiting trial. Same with Freeda Miller, an Ohio Mennonite woman who practiced midwifery in her community and was arrested and spent six months in prison for refusing to reveal the source of her Pitocin. In that case, it wasn't even for something that went wrong but for something that went right, when she treated a life-threatening PPH with Pitocin. But because midwives in OH aren't licensed and authorized to carry Pit (no one who isn't licensed is authorized to carry Pit) she was arrested anyway.

It's easy for home birth consumers to become complacent when there's a lull in criminal prosecutions in their state or when they live in a state where CPMs have yet to be driven underground or out-of-state due to the threat of prosecution. But IL is a perfect example. Midwives there used to advertise in the yellow pages, work openly with doctors and hospitals, and there were more than enough of them to meet the demand for home birth in the state. A high profile criminal trial and a series of cease and desist orders changed all that literally overnight.

The only thing that will change it back is the passage of a law to license CPMs, which IL is very close to doing. But they're doing it from a serious disadvantage, being on the defensive and with their few remaining midwives unable to testify before the legislature out of fear of being arrested. As far as I know there's currently no organized movement in PA to license CPMs, though now would be a good time to do it while the climate there remains relatively tolerant and while midwives are still openly practicing.

Katie Prown
Legislative Chair
Wisconsin Guild of Midwives
post #39 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greeneyes0506 View Post
I'm in NY on Long Island. To my knowledge there are only 2 homebirth midwives on the island and I don't think either of them will do a HBAC
I'm not sure about that--I was discussing VBAC in the LI Mamas thread and someone recommended one of the LI HB midwives.

Part of the issue on LI is demand, though--it's not a natural birth friendly area. (I'm from there originally.)

I know that at least one of the NYC midwives will do HBAC, but I can't remember who. It's definitely possible though.
post #40 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greeneyes0506 View Post
I'm in NY on Long Island. To my knowledge there are only 2 homebirth midwives on the island and I don't think either of them will do a HBAC
There are definitely more than 2, and I know of at least 3 that do HBAC.
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