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Keeping the Kinship: How strategic relationships between Doulas and Midwives improve maternity care

This session will provide a review of evidence blended with historical milestones on the value of the Doula and Midwife. Key emphasis will be placed on how these similar yet differing roles compliment a comprehensive model of care that is sorely missing in the United States. Maternity care in the US, as described by the World Health Organization, should place women in the center and provide essential physical resources with competent and motivated staff. Optimal care also includes recognizing the value of continuity of care throughout pregnancy, labor, birth and postpartum. Recommendations for enhancing Doula/Midwife relationships, thereby improving maternal health outcomes while amplifying the opportunity to influence systems change, will be presented.