Lamaze International Brings Maternal-Child Health Stakeholders Together to Discuss Childbirth Education

roundtable 2015On Monday, December 7th, Lamaze International convened 13 representatives from government and healthcare organizations to its Roundtable in Washington, D.C. to discuss the role that evidence based childbirth education has in improving childbirth outcomes. The Roundtable provided participants an opportunity to learn about Lamaze’s six evidence based Healthy Birth Practices and its initiatives to improve childbirth education access and utilization. Lamaze also released a policy brief, Evidence-Based Childbirth Education: A Key Strategy to Improve U.S. Childbirth Outcomes, which addresses the current access and utilization barriers to evidence based childbirth education.

The Roundtable provided a forum for health-policy experts and thought leaders to come together and discuss the current barriers to childbirth education and the effect that they have on childbirth outcomes. Participants took part in a series of break-out sessions throughout the day to strategize on ways to overcome these barriers and the collaborative steps necessary to improve childbirth outcomes in the United States.roundtable 2

The exchange of ideas and willingness to collaborate was perhaps the most exciting aspect of the day. Roundtable participants spoke about the initiatives that their groups have underway to improve childbirth outcomes, which generated a lot enthusiasm toward partnering on current and future projects. In additional to learning from each other, the Roundtable created additional momentum to work together to tackle childbirth disparities and poor outcomes in the United States. As individual groups, we can do—and have done—a lot to work toward this goal. As partners, we can surpass this goal.

Participants in the Roundtable included representatives from:

roundtable 3Look for more information about the Roundtable discussions and a synopsis of the day from Lamaze International Board Member Christine Morton, Phd in the next few weeks along with the next steps for the Roundtable.

Check out some of the photos  on Facebook from the Roundtable.   You can read the online version of Lamaze International’s policy brief on childbirth education or download it here.  You can find many resources about Lamaze International’s advocacy work and efforts to improve maternal infant health outcomes on our Advocacy page.


Missing from the list of parti

December 14, 2015 07:00 AM by Kaye Kanne
Missing from the list of participants in this important meeting is the American Association of Birth Centers and the National Association of Certified Professional Midwives. These associations are experts in physiologic birth which is important for improving outcomes. Out of hospital birth is a very real option for women in this country and should be promoted as it is in England and other European countries that have much better maternal and baby outcomes than we do in this country. We are not going to improve outcomes in this country by doing the same things using the same providers.

Kaye, What a great suggestion!

December 15, 2015 07:00 AM by Maria J. Brooks, BSN, RNC-OB, LCCE, FACCE
Kaye, What a great suggestion! Thank you for your thoughtful feedback. You are right, these are great stakeholder groups and Lamaze would welcome them to the conversation. This was Lamaze's first attempt at a roundtable and although it was met with much success and enthusiasm, it's only the beginning of these collaborations. We agree that the place of birth and choice of care provider are key factors in improving safe and healthy birth outcomes. In fact, the importance of care provider choice was the recent focus of a Lamaze infographic we recently released. Our first Roundtable on Childbirth Education was an opportunity to get the conversation started with a diverse array of organizations. Our goal is to keep the momentum going through additional outreach and engagement with other groups that value the role evidence-based childbirth education can play in improving birth outcomes. Thanks for reminding us that we have many allies. It's a hopeful feeling that more women and their families will have access to quality childbirth education. Look for more information to come on next steps and get involved.

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