May 01, 2011
Focus on: Coalition for Improving Maternity Services
By: Kimmelin Hull, PA, LCCE | 0 Comments
[Editor's note: This week, we will feature a series of mini-posts on organizations whose primary purpose is to improve the lives and well-being of women and mothers during their childbearing years. Also, don't forget to send us your stories on how you especially honor mothers in your own childbirth-related practices, in recognition of Mother's Day. Contest submission ends this Friday!]
The Coalition for Improving Maternity Services (CIMS) was established as a non-profit organization in 1997, following the publication of the Mother-Friendly Childbirth Initiative. This initiative was the product of a series of think tank-like meetings with members of 26 national and international organizations which all work to improve pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding practices. CIMS is comprised of not only members from these organizations, but also individuals, with the common goal of establishing a heightened standard of evidence-based maternity care. Focus on prevention, as a means of reducing financial burden and poor perinatal outcomes, is a large part of the CIMS proclamation.
In 2006, a special committee was formed within CIMS at their annual meeting in Boston, MA: The Grassroots Advocates Committee. From this formation, came a project called The Birth Survey, an element of CIMS' Transparency in Maternity Care Project. This on-line tool provides the means for maternity care system consumers to self-report on their perinatal experiences with maternity care providers and facilities. The Birth Survey is also a great tool for providers and facilities to find feedback on the care they are delivering.
CIMS has established criterion by which a hospital, birth center or home birth service may receive "Mother-Friendly Status", outlined here: CIMS MFS. As stated on their website,
We believe the philosophical cornerstones of mother-friendly care to be as follows:
Normalcy of the Birthing Process
- Birth is a normal, natural, and healthy process.
- Women and babies have the inherent wisdom necessary for birth.
- Babies are aware, sensitive human beings at the time of birth, and should be acknowledged and treated as such.
- Breastfeeding provides the optimum nourishment for newborns and infants.
- Birth can safely take place in hospitals, birth centers, and homes.
- The midwifery model of care, which supports and protects the normal birth process, is the most appropriate for the majority of women during pregnancy and birth.
CIMS is a member of the National Quality Forum (NQF), as well as the United States Breastfeeding Committee.
To find out how you can get involved with the Coalition for Improving Maternity Services, go here.
TagsMaternal Infant Care Mother-Friendly ChildBirth Initiative CIMS Coalition For Improving Maternity Services Connected Children Grassroots Advocates Committee National Quality Forum The Birth Survey Transparency In Maternity Care U.S. Breastfeeding Committe