Major recommendations for childbirth education emerge from Transforming Maternity Care Symposium
needs to do what,
to, with, and for whom
over the next five years
to improve the quality of maternity care?
Not surprisingly, one of the answers to “who” is “childbirth educators,” and the Blueprint offered recommendations about “what” the childbirth education community should be doing. Lamaze International participated in the planning, symposium, and workgroup efforts that produced the Blueprint for Action. Lamaze will reflect on these and other recommendations made in the Blueprint and accompanying stakeholder workgroup reports as we plan our future as an organization and a profession.
Here are the recommendations that pertain directly to childbirth education:
Revive and broaden the reach of childbirth education through expanded models and innovative teaching modalities.
- Investigate the current role of formal childbirth education in women’s decision making and the ways they obtain and use information about pregnancy and childbirth
- Implement and evaluate several models of education for childbearing women:
*Independent, community-based education that fosters taking responsibility for informed maternity care decision making
*Peer education with “good birth ambassadors” serving as change agents in local communities
*Alternate media for childbirth education, such as web-based formats and podcasts.
- Seek reimbursement for childbirth education models of demonstrated effectiveness.
- Engage National Priorities Partnership (NPP) members in piloting the various educational strategies and implementing effective ones in fulfillment of their focus on better engaging patients and families in managing their health and making decisions about their care.
The Blueprint for Action and other documents are a treasure trove of direction-setting priorities, action steps, and tools for implementation to achieve meaningful maternity care reform. Science & Sensibility will join other bloggers over the coming weeks to highlight the recommendations and resources put forth. All stake-holders, including consumers, should embrace this vision for the future of maternity care.