This bill would require licensed midwives in the State of South Carolina to have an obstetrician sponsor and regulate them in the practice of midwifery. This requirement would be a de facto ban on homebirths and licensed midwives in the State of South Carolina, as typically no obstetricians, and only licensed midwives attend home births in this state. It is a conflict of interest to allow obstetricians to determine the professional fate of those who offer the only alternative to their own practice.
Furthermore, defining licensed midwives as "Lay Midwives" and requiring them to wear badges with that title, implies that their clinical and didactic training is insufficient to provide quality care, and to produce positive birth outcomes. The term is insulting to the dedicated and experienced practitioners of natural birth throughout the State of South Carolina, and as such, is not befitting the consideration of bodies as esteemed as the South Carolina Legislature, or the House Committee on Medical, Military, Public and Municipal Affairs.
House Bill H. 3731 the 'South Carolina Lay Midwife Act', if passed, will deny the families of this state the right to make informed decisions about how and where they choose to bring their children into this world, and will allow a medical monopoly to deny the skilled professionals of the midwifery community in the State of South Carolina their ability to provide quality alternative care, as they have for decades.