The gentlebirth.org website is provided courtesy of
Ronnie Falcao, LM MS, a homebirth midwife in Mountain View, CA
An interactive resource for moms on easy steps they can take to reduce exposure to chemical toxins during pregnancy.
Other excellent resources about avoiding toxins during pregnancy
These are easy to read and understand and are beautifully presented.
If you know someone who received bad care at a birth and is interested in taking this on, I would recommend that she file a formal complaint with the hospital and the state Medical Board. Here are the regulatory grounds, the first from HIPAA and the second from regulations governing any hospital that accepts Medicaid (called MediCal in California) and Medicare patients.
In order to ensure consumers' right and ability to participate in treatment
decisions, health care professionals should:
Provide patients with easily understood information and opportunity to decide among treatment options consistent with the informed consent process. Specifically,
Discuss all treatment options with a patient in a culturally competent manner, including the option of no treatment at all. . . .
Discuss all risks, benefits, and consequences to treatment or nontreatment.
Give patients the opportunity to refuse treatment. . .
Abide by the decisions made by their patients . . . consistent with the informed consent process.?
Office of Personnel Management HIPAA Consumer Rights and Responsibilities. Appendix A. Consumer bill of rights and responsibilities. Chapter four: Participation in treatment decisions.
"A hospital must protect and promote each patient's rights. . . . The patient's rights include . . . being able to . . . refuse treatment. . . . The patient has the right to be free from all forms of abuse or harassment"
Department of Health and Human Services. Chapter IV -- Centers for medicare & medicaid services, Department of Health and Human Services: Part 482--Conditions for participation for hospitals. In: National Archives and Records Administration; 2005.
If we are ever going to see change, we have to start forcing recognition
of what this really is and move beyond the "he wasn't nice to me, and he
made me feel bad" framing in the same way consciousness needed to be changed
about domestic violence and sexual harassment in the workplace. Of course,
problem is, the doula can't do it and the woman isn't likely to do it given
the psychology of it all and the practical issue of the time and energy
it would take. [Editor's note - maybe the doula from the birth can "doula"
the process of filing a complaint.]
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