Natural Birthing Rights may be at Risk
This year on May 2nd at our 3rd annual Pregnancy Awareness Month™ kickoff event up at TreePeople (http://www.treepeople.org ) in LA, CA, Ricki Lake (producer of The Business of Being Born and an adviser on our team) shared with me that just days before the midwives in New York City had lost their right to attend home births and Saint Vincent’s (a progressive hospital/birthing center) had shut it’s doors.
I was shocked and sad, tears welled up in my eyes. That New York City, one of the most progressive, hip and advanced cities in the world, would allow this to pass was astonishing and archaic. It suddenly felt that the work we do at Pregnancy Awareness Month™, to empower women as they move into pregnancy and birth seemed futile, at least temporarily.
Then a week later a friend and supporter of natural child birth in San Diego County, OBGYN Robert Biter, MD had his hospital rights suspended, literally from one day to the next with no public statement as to the reason or charges. A man nicknamed “Dr. Wonderful” and who happens to have the low C-section rate of 5-10% suddenly barred from his privileges to service his patients? I ask you, what the heck is going on here?
On Friday May 14th, I attended a rally for Dr. Biter, over 400 women, many who had given birth with him, many who had not, and many pregnant women who were suddenly left without the doctor they had chosen and entrusted, all stood outside of Scripps Memorial Hospital in Encinitas with signs that read: BRING BITER BACK and OUR BODIES~ OUR BABIES~ OUR BITER! It was, and continues to be, a call to action.
Some women such as Ricki Lake and myself, who had not birthed with Dr. Biter were there because we wanted to support a wonderful doctor who believes that a woman’s body has the wisdom and strength to birth the way nature intended. But we were all there because at the end of the day: EVERY WOMAN HAS THE RIGHT TO BIRTH HOW, WHERE AND WITH WHOM SHE DAMN WELL PLEASES! This is our birth right, it always has been and unless we stand up and let the powers that be know how we feel, city by city and state by state the medical industry (out of fear or greed or whatever their reasons are) will close birthing centers, suspend wonderful and competent doctors, outlaw midwives and we will lose that birth right, to birth the way nature intended.
So please…speak up and let the powers that be know how you feel.
You can also learn more about the ongoing lobbying that is occurring on Dr. Biter’s behalf at the website BringBiterBack.com.
Pregnancy Awareness Month co-founders, Anna Getty & Alisa Donner will be live on BlogTalkRadio.com with Ricki Lake this Friday, May 21st at 11am PST. The trio will be discuss Dr. Biter and the state of midwifery in New York City.