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Malpractice Insurance?

Last post 10-08-2009 6:33 PM by rubyinparadise. 3 replies.
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  • 10-05-2009 11:41 AM

    Malpractice Insurance?

    Hi there,

    I am a first time mom-to-be who is expecting my little guy at the end of March 2010. When I signed the contract with the birthing center and midwife of my choice, I noticed that the contract stated quite clearly at the end that the midwife is currently practicing without malpractice insurance.

    I would like to hear opinions from midwives, doulas and experienced mothers as to whether or not this should be cause for concern. The practice consists of three midwives. The director is a midwife with over 20 years of experience; the other two midwives are newer, with just a few years' experience each. So far, I am comfortable with everyone in the practice I have met, including the midwife assistants and doulas.

    The contract allows me to state a preference for a specific midwife to attend my birth, but there is no absolute guarantee as to who will be available or on call when I go into active labor.

    Thank you in advance for your responses.


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  • 10-06-2009 9:47 AM In reply to

    • RobsGirl
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 02-04-2009
    • Mid-Hudson Valley, NY
    • Posts 364

    Re: Malpractice Insurance?

    Hi rubyinparadise,

    We're currently planning a homebirth for late January with midwives.  This is our second birth with the same midwives and they also do not carry malpractice insurance.  I'm sure there's no way they can afford it and in their contract they ask that their clients stand behind them (FAR from thought of suing) in case of problems in the same way they place themselves at personal and political risk so we can have our choice of care and birth-place.  I woudln't expect them to carry malpractice.  I'm guessing that most midwives in alternative birth settings also do not carry it.  So I don't think you're seeing anything out of the ordinary for the situation.

    Just my two cents, and I'm not a midwife.  I'm also making a lot of assumptions here, but I hope some midwives can shed some light as well.

    RobsGirl, 31
    Wife of one fabulous guy (34)
    Mommy of 3 awesome boys, ages 11, 8, and 4, and a precious 2 year old daughter.

  • 10-06-2009 1:07 PM In reply to

    Re: Malpractice Insurance?

    I'm in the UK, none of the independant midwives here carry malpractice insurance because they cannot possibly afford it.

    The midwife we plan on booking is no exception and makes it very clear on her paperwork that she doesn't carry it.  When we talked about it she too said it was a risk peculiar in the UK that one needs to take to have one-to-one midwifery care.  We accept there are risks in life and we chose this midwife because she believes in the process of birth and in our abilities as partners in the birthing of our baby, and we believe she will put her neck on the line to make sure we get the birth we want safely and joyfully if at all possible.


    Me 32, DH 41, DD 2006, DD 2010, DS 2013
  • 10-08-2009 6:33 PM In reply to

    Re: Malpractice Insurance?

    Thank you so much for your thoughtful replies. I completely agree that midwives are placing themselves on the line so that we can have the birth we choose for ourselves and our children, and I appreciate also that malpractice insurance really only protects providers, anyway. In my county, the c-section rate is currently at 50%, and there is an intense anti-midwifery stance among the local hospitals and OB-GYNs. I am just grateful that there are still reputable and experienced midwives practicing here.

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