I wanted to take a few minutes to talk about credentialing and licensing – the reason for all the letters at the end of a name.  It isn’t always easy to understand how the whole process works, especially when you are just looking into midwifery as an option. So, my full title (right now) is:  Jennifer Vanderlaan, MSN MPH RN CNM FNP What does all that mean?Read More →

No matter what type of midwifery training you pursue, you will work with preceptors.  Some programs require you to find your own preceptor — which can be nearly impossible in some regions. Other programs assign students to preceptors — which means you may have additional travel costs and spend more time away from family. Regardless of how your preceptor is assigned, how do you use this relationship to become the best midwife you can be?  Here are some ideas.Read More →

When we talk about midwifery training outside the US, we could focus the discussion in one of two ways.  One way would be to talk about the training available outside the US for those who will work outside the US.  The second is to talk about training outside the US for those who intend to work inside the US.  This discussion will be about the later — training outside the US to be licensed as a midwife in the US.Read More →

Is choosing a midwifery training program confusing?  It can be. This is because when you select your training program you are really selecting up to three things: and educational degree, a competency certification, and a government issued license or registration. The educational degree You can find midwifery training programs around the world that will provide you with all levels of educational degrees, from no degree to a doctorate practice. This is important for two reasons. First, some areas limit the practice of midwives to a minimum educational degree regardless of ability to pass a competency certification exam. If you select a program that does not meetRead More →

Last time we talked about the basics of nurse-midwifery.  Today we will talk about what it means to be a  direct entry midwife. Just like nurse-midwifery, direct entry midwifery is a term that holds many types of training and practice. The term direct entry midwifery is a bit awkward, and probably only exists in the United States (I haven’t heard any non-US midwives use it). It seems to be a term used to differentiate between midwives who are trained first as a nurse from those who were not — you are either a nurse-midwife or a direct entry midwife.  In the rest of the world midwivesRead More →

As we talk about midwifery education, I wanted to spend some time exploring different ways of categorizing midwives. I have had the opportunity to meet and work with midwives from around the world, and I am always amazed at how these categories do not always mean what I had been trained to think they mean. The first case in point is nurse midwifery, a common midwifery training where I live in the United States.  My training as a midwife is as a nurse midwife.  The question is, what does it mean to be a nurse midwife?Read More →

Last week we looked at the International Confederation of Midwives Core Competencies for Midwives and the Educational Standards as documents to help you evaluate your midwifery training options.  Today we will look at the ICM Core Documents on Midwifery Regulation as the final triad to helping us understand the unique challenges of midwifery in your corner of the world.Read More →

Earlier this week I introduced you to the ICM Core Competencies for Midwifery. Today I want to introduce you the the ICM Education Standards for Midwifery. The educational standards document is a bit different from the core competencies document because it deals with a different aspect of the process of becoming a midwife. Specifically, it deals with the quality of the training program rather than the quality of the student. Read More →

Have you ever wondered who decides what you need to know to be a midwife? This is an important question, because the answer to this question helps define who is (and is not) a midwife. The answer to this question defines the difference between a nurse and a midwife, a doula and a midwife, or a physician and a midwife. The answer to this question explains why midwifery is a unique form of health care, and also the limits of a midwife. Read More →