Hospital Midwives Come Back to Wichita — Wichita Doula

We are very excited to help spread some great news for Wichita’s expectant parents: Midwife-assisted births are once again a reality for families delivering at Wesley Medical Center/Wesley BirthCare Suites!

As many of you probably know, several years ago our local hospitals eliminated the option of midwife-attended births for low-risk women. This situation has led to a great deal of consternation locally because we know parents deserve more birth choices, not less, and there have been several news articles, petitions, and protests in response.

I had the opportunity to speak with Stacey Eason, CNM, APRN, the Certified Nurse Midwife who has been a big part of the efforts to bring back midwife attended hospital births to our area, and get all the details on her training. Our team members have enjoyed having her presence as an RN at our clients’ jobs, and very much look forward to working with her as a primary care provider in the near future.

Where to find a Hospital Midwife in Wichita:

Stacey Eason, Rachel Cheek, and Amanda Haworth are the three Certified Nurse Midwives who have joined Mid-Kansas Women’s Center, a top OB-GYN practice in Wichita. Their main location for prenatal and gynecological appointments is their East location at 9300 E. 29th St N., with outreach locations in their Andover, Derby, and West Wichita offices as well.

What Services Can a Midwife Provide?

Midwives are pleased to provide full coverage reproductive health care to women in the Wichita area. This means you can have your annual health exams, prenatal care, labor and delivery at Wesley hospital, birth control options, and other reproductive concerns attended to by midwives.

Hospital Privileges for Wichita Midwives

The midwives at Mid-Kansas Women’s Center are excited to help you deliver your baby at Wesley Medical Center and Wesley BirthCare Suites, temporary start October 1, 2020! Effective immediately, they will see you in their office for your prenatal and well-woman care.

So What Changed?

I’m very interested to know – since all the protests, hashtags, and petitions a few years ago seemed to have no results, what has changed so that Wichita women can now have the option of a midwife-attended hospital birth? I’ll just share Stacey’s answer with you:

“Wesley hired an amazing chief nursing officer a few years ago. She came from Houston, where midwifery care was the standard for low-risk births. She came to Wesley with the goal of bringing midwives back into the Birth Care Suites. He worked tirelessly to gain support and rewrite credentialing contracts to make this happen. Wesley also started a program that had in-house, OB/ GYN working in the hospital 24/7. This created a safety net for any Certified Nurse Midwives practicing in the hospital. There are still some hiccups to iron out, but essentially, it created an environment that would respect the scope of practice for CNMs to practice in their full scope.”

Does a physician still need to be present at your deliveries?

As you remember, a physician is required to attend a birth attended by a Certified Nurse Midwife. Now, there must be a physician on the Wesley campus. The midwives’ backup doctor, Dr. Rogers, can be obtained near the time of birth and enter when needed or leave when not needed.

Is a Certified Nurse Midwife Right for You?

Depending on your pregnancy situation and birth preferences, you may be wondering if a hospital midwife is the right care provider for you.

Midwifery is considered the highest standard of women’s health care, worldwide, and with 80% of pregnancies categorized as low risk there is little need to see a specialist unless there are complications. Midwifery care with the backup of a physician when needed is something all women deserve. All women can benefit from midwifery care and the midwives at Mid-Kansas Women’s Center have a special heart for those who are underserved or feel unheard.

The midwifery practice at MKWC believes in low-intervention, physiologic birth. They also believe in shared decision-making, with the goal of helping women feel empowered and autonomous throughout their pregnancy and birth experience.

What If I Have Complications of Pregnancy or Birth?

The midwives’ plan is to manage any pregnancy that is not low risk with Dr. Rogers. For example, if you develop gestational diabetes, the OB-GYN will manage part of the diabetes care and midwives still plan to attend the birth and do most of the prenatal care. An ideal situation involves every newly pregnant person seen by midwives, co-managing them as much as possible and keeping them in their care until something can be shown to put them at risk.

Can Certified Nurse Midwives Receive Insurance?

One of the most frequent questions we get is how to find a midwife in Wichita that accepts insurance. Mid-Kansas Women’s Center midwives take all area insurance: private, military, Medicaid and Medicare.

Meet the Midwives:

Stacey replied:

“We are three CNMs. All three of us graduated with our MSN from Frontier Nursing University. Rachel Cheek has been working in Wichita for the past 5 years at HealthCore, providing excellent prenatal and well-woman care to the women of Wichita. She is very excited to finally expand her practice to include attending births. Amanda Haworth has been an OB nurse for several years, and graduated with her MSN spring 2019. I was an OB nurse for 23 years, worked with home birth midwives, and graduated with my MSN fall 2019. I also worked at Wesley as a RN for the past 7 years, which gives me a good feel for the way things are there, and allows me some freedom and flexibility to re-introduce the midwife way. I have built strong, trusting relationships with nurses and residents, and look forward to entering my APRN role. I have also begun the education process for certification as a psych-mental health nurse practitioner. Our community is severely under-resourced for people suffering from perinatal mood and anxiety disorders and birth trauma/PTSD. I plan to have a specialty clinic to care for this population in Wichita. I would like to add that while midwives are mostly associated with pregnancy and childbirth, Rachel and I in particular really enjoy seeing people for their gynecological needs. Realizing that your audience doesn’t necessarily include this, but I especially like to see young and postmenopausal people for their health care needs.

How to Have Your First Midwife Appointment:

Mid-Kansas Women’s Center midwives are taking appointments today, September 1, 2020, with hospital privileges temporary start October 1, 2020. Call the office and tell the appointment desk you want an appointment with a midwife. You can request one of the midwives by name or be scheduled with any of the three.

Midwives take all transfers, no matter how far they are.

We congratulate Stacey, Rachel, and Amanda on their exciting new roles and look forward to working with them in the birthing rooms!

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button