Iowa needs more midwives to save lives

Rachel Bruns continues a series of posts addressing the quality of maternal health care in Iowa. -promoted by Laura Belin

This article is all about midwives. I will be using this space to expand on four different needs in our state to improve the access and quality of maternal-child health care in Iowa. All of them are interrelated. If Iowa accomplishes these four things, we will see an improvement in maternal-child health outcomes across all races, accessibility of care options in all geographies, and an overall increase in quality and satisfaction from patients. 

The four areas I will address are:

  • The need to diversify our workforce and address birth equity (this is connected to the next 2 items)
  • The need to license Certified Professional Midwives (CPMs)
  • The need to expand access to Certified Nurse Midwives (CNMs).
  • The need to expand access to birth centers.
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    Iowa Senate Democrats' wrongheaded thinking

    Jon Green is a former mayor of Lone Tree, where he resides. He works in information technology. -promoted by Laura Belin

    The Iowa Senate Democratic caucus has penis problems.

    To wit: State Senator Nate Boulton. During his 2018 gubernatorial bid, Boulton was credibly accused of sexually assaulting three women. Brianne Pfannenstiel of the Des Moines Register broke the story. Pfannenstiel, quoting Boulton:

    “I don’t have the same recollection,” he told the Register. “But I am not going to offer any additional context to this, other than to say if someone’s perspective is that it was inappropriate and I crossed a line and I misread a situation in a social setting, I do apologize.”

    He declined to comment on or discuss the specific incidents, saying, “I think if I add context it quickly becomes victim-blaming, and I don’t want to go down that path.”

    Only a lawyer could find that statement satisfying. While Boulton did drop out of the governor’s race soon after, he retained his Iowa Senate seat.

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    Record number of women will serve in Iowa Senate; fewer elected to House

    Second in a series interpreting the results of Iowa’s 2020 state and federal elections.

    The non-profit 50-50 in 2020 dissolved early this year after working for a decade to increase women’s representation in Iowa politics. Although our state has elected a woman governor, a woman to the U.S. Senate (twice), and will have women representing three of the the four Congressional districts for the next two years, we have a long way to go toward parity in the Iowa legislature.

    When lawmakers convene in Des Moines in January, women will make up one-quarter of the Iowa Senate for the first time. However, the number of women serving in the House will drop below one-third of the chamber.

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    Abortions up 25 percent after Iowa GOP replaced family planning program

    Who could have predicted it, other than anyone familiar with reproductive health care?

    Republican lawmakers and Governor Terry Branstad eliminated Iowa’s successful Medicaid Family Planning Waiver in 2017 and created a new state program that excluded abortion providers. The move forced Planned Parenthood to close four of its Iowa clinics around the state and dramatically decreased the number of Iowans receiving birth control and other reproductive services.

    Preliminary data from the Iowa Department of Public Health indicate that Iowans had 25 percent more abortions in 2019 than in the previous year.

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    Minority impact statements in Iowa: History and continuing efforts

    Marty Ryan of Des Moines lobbied the Iowa legislature for 27 years and now blogs weekly. -promoted by Laura Belin

    The Iowa quarter, printed in the latter part of 2004, is based upon a Grant Wood painting depicting a group of students and their teacher planting a tree outside of a county school. The statement on the coin says, “Foundation In Education.” For many decades, Iowa was noted for its first-in-the-nation education status. Likewise, Iowa has been a consistent leader in civil rights.

    In fact, Iowa established some standards of equality long before the federal government or other states.

    But racial disparities continue to affect Iowans in many areas of life. A reform the Democratic-controlled legislature enacted more than a decade ago has only slightly mitigated the problem.

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    Iowa SOS will need permission for future emergency election changes

    Secretary of State Paul Pate will need approval from the Legislative Council in order to use his emergency powers to alter election procedures, under a bill Governor Kim Reynolds signed on June 25.

    While Republicans have a majority on that legislative body, it’s not clear they would use that power to prevent Pate from repeating steps that led to record-breaking turnout for the June 2 primary.

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