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Nurse-Midwives, the Mass Media, and the Politics of Maternal Health Care in the United States, 1925–1955

Nurse-Midwives, the Mass Media, and the Politics of Maternal Health Care in the United States,... Nurse-Midwives, the Mass Media, and the Politics of Maternd Health Care in the United States, 1925-1955 Department of Liberal Arts Clarkson University Nurse-midwifery developed in the United States amidst concern in the 1920s about alarmingly high maternal and infant mortality rates, poor obstetrical training for physicians, and the practices of unsupervised, unlicensed, and unrrained midwives. The new specialty formed within the growing field of public health nursingwhich rose in the reformist atmosphere of the Progressive era and continued to expand after the passage of the Sheppard-Towner Maternity and Inbncy Proteaion Act of 1921.' The first two services and schools of nurse-midwifery were Frontier Nursing Service (FNS) in eastern Kentucky, founded in 1925, and Maternity Center Association (MCA) in New York City, which established its nurse-midwifery service and school in 1931. These services and schools, like the others which followcd in the 1940s, served poor, often minority, patients. Nurse-midwives first qualified as nurses and then completed special training in obstetrics. They attended births and provided prenataI and posrnatal care, instituted public health programs, and oftenserved as educators of parents, lay midwives, and other health care workers. In the regions where hey worked, maternal and infant mordity races rn+ declined. Yet, http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Nursing History Review Springer Publishing

Nurse-Midwives, the Mass Media, and the Politics of Maternal Health Care in the United States, 1925–1955

Nursing History Review , Volume 7 (1): 20 – Jan 1, 1999

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Publisher
Springer Publishing
ISSN
1062-8061
eISSN
1938-1913
DOI
10.1891/1062-8061.7.1.47
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Nurse-Midwives, the Mass Media, and the Politics of Maternd Health Care in the United States, 1925-1955 Department of Liberal Arts Clarkson University Nurse-midwifery developed in the United States amidst concern in the 1920s about alarmingly high maternal and infant mortality rates, poor obstetrical training for physicians, and the practices of unsupervised, unlicensed, and unrrained midwives. The new specialty formed within the growing field of public health nursingwhich rose in the reformist atmosphere of the Progressive era and continued to expand after the passage of the Sheppard-Towner Maternity and Inbncy Proteaion Act of 1921.' The first two services and schools of nurse-midwifery were Frontier Nursing Service (FNS) in eastern Kentucky, founded in 1925, and Maternity Center Association (MCA) in New York City, which established its nurse-midwifery service and school in 1931. These services and schools, like the others which followcd in the 1940s, served poor, often minority, patients. Nurse-midwives first qualified as nurses and then completed special training in obstetrics. They attended births and provided prenataI and posrnatal care, instituted public health programs, and oftenserved as educators of parents, lay midwives, and other health care workers. In the regions where hey worked, maternal and infant mordity races rn+ declined. Yet,

Journal

Nursing History ReviewSpringer Publishing

Published: Jan 1, 1999

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