Maternity matters: addressing the maternity care crisis in Canada.
Despite its everyday occurrence however, pregnancy and childbirth are approached as serious, potentially life-threatening medical conditions, requiring both medical specialists and a great deal of technology, rather than as normal, healthy physiological events. Given this approach to pregnancy and childbirth, access to medical care affects where and how women experience these life events.
Today, in Canada, there are reforms to maternity care provision that raise questions about whether it is really available for women and their families. Fewer family physicians are providing maternity care, especially during labour and birth. Even routine prenatal care is difficult to get in some communities. And fewer small hospitals provide maternity care, forcing many women to leave their families and travel long distances to give birth.
Governments, health authorities, physicians and nurses tend to think of recent changes in maternity care as a human resource problem because there are fewer experts to provide care. But maternity matters in Canada for many more reasons. Not only do women have difficulty finding supportive, attentive, respectful care providers close to home, women also need care providers who use what we already know from research and experience about what helps and what harms women and their babies.
Why should we be concerned about the state of maternity care? Because maternity care is different from other health services. First, babies cannot wait--there can be no waiting lists for maternity care. Second, women's experiences during pregnancy and birth, good or bad, can deeply affect how women feel about their babies, about themselves as mothers, and their other relationships.
Providing pregnant and birthing women with good care improves the lives of women and their children both immediately and in the long term.
Read the full booklet, Maternity Matters from Women and Health Care Reform. Available online at: www.cewh-cesf.ca/healthreform/index.html
Hard copies of the booklet can also be ordered from: 1-888-818-9172 or email@example.com
from Women and Health Care Reform
|Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback|
|Title Annotation:||NOW AVAILABLE!|
|Date:||Mar 22, 2007|
|Previous Article:||It is time for a national birthing strategy.|
|Next Article:||In need of a healthy balance: poor health and economic insecurity are realities for female unpaid caregivers.|