Midwifery services in Asheville, NC

Pregnant or planning to be? Check out these nine local midwives.

A smiling pregnant woman and belly

WNC’s impressive midwifery history continues today.

Photo via @westashevilleyoga

In addition to changing leaves and festivals galore, there’s another cool happening this October: National Midwifery Week. Taking place Sun., Oct. 2-Sat., Oct. 8, the event is designed to celebrate and recognize midwives and the care they provide.

Psst, if you didn’t know: midwives are trained health professionals who help women during labor, delivery, and after the birth of their babies. And they have an impressive legacy in WNC. While the majority of the country’s midwives practice in hospital settings, others practice in birthing centers and private practices and provide in-home birth services.

Midwives are the OGs of labor + delivery. Birth has historically been a female-centric event where laboring women are supported by other women and attended to by a midwife. Protip: check out Appalachia’s granny midwives for some especially cool history.

There are four types of midwives:

  • Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) — Certified professional midwives work exclusively in settings outside of hospitals, like homes + birth centers. These midwives have completed coursework, an apprenticeship, and a national certifying exam. Their licensure is only accepted in 33 states, though many work in states where they’re not recognized.
  • Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM) — Certified nurse midwives have completed both nursing school + an additional graduate degree in midwifery. They’re qualified to work in all birth settings and can work and write prescriptions in all 50 states. They can also provide other primary and family/reproductive healthcare.
  • Certified Midwife — Certified midwives have the same graduate-level education + training as certified nurse midwives, except they have a background in a health field other than nursing. They take the same exam as nurse midwives through the American College of Nurse Midwives.
  • Self-Taught or Traditional Midwife — These midwives lack formal certification or licensure. They often serve specific communities, including indigenous or religious populations.

DYK the number of home births — which are overwhelmingly attended by midwives — in the country surged nearly 20% during the pandemic? This is especially interesting considering that in 1900, 95 % of births in the United States took place at home. Today the number is roughly one percent.

In honor of this special week, we’re shouting out 9 local midwifery services. Show them some love + bookmark this in case you ever need their services:

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