Int'l Conference Resonates with Consumers/Providers

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Renowned childbirth experts from Canada, Mexico, Singapore and the United States will gather at the San Diego Marriott, April 29-May 1, for the conference "Reclaiming Our Choices in Childbirth," which serves as the grand finale to AprilÂ?s observance of Cesarean Awareness Month. Â?In too many communities, if a woman with a scar on her uterus wants hospital medical care during her babyÂ?s birth, she must sign up for a cesarean,Â? said ICAN President Tonya Jamois.

Renowned childbirth experts from Canada, Mexico, Singapore and the United States will gather at the San Diego Marriott, April 29-May 1, for the conference "Reclaiming Our Choices in Childbirth," which serves as the grand finale to April’s observance of Cesarean Awareness Month.

Barbara Harper, founder of Waterbirth International and closing keynote speaker, calls this an "historic conference" driven by consumer demand, provider concerns and organized by the International Cesarean Awareness Network (ICAN), the California Association of Midwives (CAM) and Birth Resource Network (BRN). One week before the conference, all exhibitor booths have been reserved and only a few discounted hotel rooms remain.

The conference theme – “Reclaiming Our Choices in Childbirth” – provides a unifying message for the birth community and childbearing women at a time when more than 300 U.S. hospitals and at least two medical malpractice companies now ban normal/vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC). This despite research showing VBAC is safer than repeat cesarean for most women and babies.

“In too many communities, if a woman with a scar on her uterus wants hospital medical care during her baby’s birth, she must sign up for a cesarean,” said ICAN President Tonya Jamois.

This month, the American College of Nurse Midwives (ACNM) issued a call for Congressional hearings to investigate the rising cesarean rate and its impact on women’s health and the entire health care system.

Major conference topics include dwindling birth choices (regarding location & provider), the safety of vaginal birth and VBAC, post-partum depression, consumer activism and the impact of changing childbirth norms on breastfeeding.

Scheduled to speak are: Wendy McCarty, PhD., RN; Henci Goer; Gloria Lemay; Maryi Sagady, CNM, MSN; Faith Gibson, CPM, LM and more than 20 other noted childbirth experts. Two pre-conference sessions offer further opportunities for enrichment. Conference registration costs $350 with discounts available for ICAN, CAM and BRN members. Registrations will be taken on-site as well as in advance. For birth professionals, continuing education units have been applied for from ACNM, California Board of Registered Nursing and International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners.

The conference weekend includes the final days of April, Cesarean Awareness Month (CAM), and kicks off May, the month of the doula. For more information and to register, visit http://conference.ican-online.org

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