The Birthing Circle's Improving Birth Initiatives 2018 (Frederick, MD)

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The Birthing Circle is committed to improving birth and postpartum on a local and state level, beginning by these proposed evidence-based proposals on updated policies.  

1. TBC asks Frederick County WIC to hire an IBCLC as per the legal requirements that one be on their staff.

2. TBC asks Frederick Memorial Hospital to abide by legal standards and inform all patients that they are being tested for illegal substances during their labor intake.

3. TBC asks Frederick Memorial Hospital and all Obstetricians attending births therein to adopt evidence-based policies regarding the following (for low-risk births and whenever possible): allowing women to eat during labor; allow intermittent monitoring of contractions and fetal heart rate; minimizing interventions in third stage and reduce the rates of manual removal of the placenta.

4. TBC asks Frederick Memorial Hospital and all Obstetricians attending births therein to publish and train on a commitment to affirmative consent, particularly during all vaginal exams, administration of medication, stripping membranes, rupturing the bag of waters, cord clamping, episiotomies, and manual removal of the placenta.

5. TBC asks Frederick County and City Government, the State of Maryland Government, and Frederick Memorial Hospital to partner with TBC's Doula Project in providing doula services to any and all low-income and marginalized women who would prefer a doula to attend their births, with the goal of reducing the rates of unnecessary cesareans per the evidence of the impact of doulas, and our Doula Project. 

We ask for these specific items in response to public outcry for lack of services currently available, and trauma and poor birth outcomes as a result of current practices. We ask these items as women and birthing people and families that believe that consent matters, and evidence and science matters in the policy decision making process. 

Sincerely, The Birthing Circle Board of Directors, and the people of Frederick County.