Improving Birth: Break the Silence
The Improving Birth movement was founded in January 2012 by a local group of moms from San Diego and has now grown to thousands and thousands of supporters and members. Their mission is “to bring respectful, evidence-based care to childbirth.”
Almost 1 in 3 women describe their birth as a “traumatic experience.” Women and care providers report that there is a culture of silence around coercion, bullying, and abuse within the Obstetrics system.
Many people are unaware that maternity care practices in the United States are decades behind what most scientists say is best for moms and their babies, as well as being behind in “more gentle, humane treatment that women and babies deserve in this most important life event.” This organization is working to inform, support, and empower women and families about the many options available for birth they didn’t even know they had.
What this agency means by “evidence-based care” is care that’s based on the individual’s needs; not hospital tradition or a profit-based policy. With the use of the most current and high-quality scientific evidence, a patient’s care is tailored to their specific needs. While you would think this is how it would already be, that unfortunately is not the case in the practice of American childbirth.
The Improving Birth movement is not about hospital vs. home births, or natural vs. medicated births. “It’s about women being capable of making safer, more informed decisions about their care and that of their babies…it’s about respect for women and their decisions in childbirth, including how, where, and with whom they give birth; and the right to be treated with dignity and compassion.”
The organization is taking a stand by encouraging families to rally, sponsor, coordinate, donate, and even submit photos with the hashtags #respectfulcare and #breakthesilence telling their personal stories with childbirthing experiences.
This is a serious, medical malpractice issue that cannot continue to go unnoticed. To get involved and help women break the silence and speak out about their experiences without fear of shame or embarrassment, please visit their website, ImprovingBirth.org.