Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Virtual Homebirth Rally

By now everyone is aware of the new legislation threatening Homebirth in Australia. Next month there is a rally in Canberra to support Homebirth and hopefully influence the parliamentarians to reconsider there current position of not providing indemnity insurance for independent midwives / private midwives. Unfortunately I am unable to attend the rally in person however I am excited at the prospect of being represented through a virtual rally, thank goodness for technology. I have designed my banner for the Homebirth rally and uploaded my picture.

In my time I have attended several rallies, some political and some pay issues within my nursing / midwifery career. I found them exhilarating, especially when you are fighting for a cause; of course the other issue is the rebel within me has a chance to be expressed. There have been several that I recall as monumental, one of those was when I worked at RPH and we all walked off the job to protest at Parliament House about workloads and pay. More recently was the march on Parliament House with the Maternity Coalition which was successful relating to maternity choices, again it was the consumer that made the difference.

One of my funniest protests was quite by accident when my girlfriend (Christine) and I were living in Hemel Hempstead UK about 10 years ago. We decided to go into London for the day, it was a Sunday, and it was a beautiful sunny day. Yes I know that can be unusual for the UK; we caught the train then the tube and got off at Piccadilly Circus. As we came up from the tube station, we thought the city of London looked particularly busy for a Sunday, some strange people everywhere, we looked closer as we were walking through the crowds towards Trafalgar Square and noticed that many people were carrying placards with a green leaf on them and there was a strange smell in the air. As we approached the centre we realised it was a socialist protest to ‘legalise it’ a green plant I guess it was “Marijuana” at least that’s what the plant looked like. We had a good laugh and wondered what our children would think if they saw us now, in the middle of a protest march for which we new nothing about. That’s how you get caught inadvertently in a protest march.

The power of the consumer is very important and people power can change legislation, so I urge you all to try and attend the rally and if not then please do become a virtual count, make your voice heard so that the politicians can see women are serious about being able to have autonomy over their own bodies. Women have the right to choose where to birth their babies without being dictated to by politicians or the medical model.

It is about, trust, integrity, fairness, honour and empowerment. Women know how to birth and where to birth – allow them the right to choose where to do it and to have a named midwife during pregnancy, birth and in the postnatal period.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

An Ethical question, "my sisters keeper"

I went to the movies to see "My sisters keeper" with my girlfriend, we had a superb night. The movie does raise ethical questions about genetically created babies, or babies created for 'spare parts'.

The movie is based on Jodie Picoult's book - the opening I thought was brilliant and quiet true, in that most babies are created by accident, where as Anna Fitzgerald (Abigal Breslin) was conceived by means of invitro fertilization. She was matched genetically so that she could provide stem cells etc for her sister Kate (Sofia Vassilieva) who stars in "Medium".

The long and the short of the story is that Ann 11yrs old sues her parents for the control of her body. This is an interesting concept because I believe that children who are sick or have a major illness are very well informed and have a good understanding of the disease process. Therefore, I also credit these children to having a greater awareness, understanding and depth about their illness. It stands to reason then that these children will a greater comprehension of the consequences of the illness and treatments.

In order for a minor (usually under 18) to be able to give consent to treatment they need to meet certain criteria and generally that is to be "Gillick competent". The other issue is that it is in the child's "best interest".

An important issue here is the right to self determination, the right to choose what happens to your body. This is particularly important for women, making decisions when pregnant. Who's body is it? the woman's, the doctor or the babies? do you force a woman to have a cesarean section to have her baby?

Imagine that a member of your family needs your kidney and you do not want to give them your kidney, for whatever your reasons and that family member dies because no one else is compatible, you can not make anyone give you a kidney because you are going to die - then think about a woman choosing not to have a cesarean section to save her baby? for what ever her reasons, providing she is mentally well. Do you force her to have c/section? I think not, this would be considered "assault and battery". Food for thought!

This movie was good in highlighting these types of ethical decisions, which I think we will see more of in the future - because these issues are not always thought through to the end, and certainly it all begins in Amercia.
Lastly, the book ends differently to the book, this was disappointing, however I think I prefer the movie ending!

The movie is worth seeing, just take some tissues!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Just don't hand your body over to medicine!

Hi blogers, yes I have been away, busy working and having a holiday. It was Ian's 60th birthday, so I just had to take him away to Malaysia for a golfing holiday. We had a restful time, I will do a blog on it as we did have some fun and I managed a par! yeah!

The semester is well underway now and the new students have began. It is always exciting. I am looking forward to "Women & Midwives - A Brilliant Blend" the Australian College of Midwives 16th Biennial Conference: in Adelaide 22 - 25 September, however lots of work has to be done before then.

I came across this trailer for orgasmic birth - have a look its great!


Save Homebirth

Home Birth Australia