Chapter

Mercy in Action: Bringing Mother- and Baby-Friendly Birth Centers to the Philippines

Vicki Penwell

in Birth Models That Work

Published by University of California Press

Published in print April 2009 | ISBN: 9780520248632
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520943339 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520248632.003.0013
Mercy in Action: Bringing Mother- and Baby-Friendly Birth Centers to the Philippines

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In light of the great tragedy involving pregnant women and infants, and in light of the global shortage of trained midwives as reported by WHO, this chapter conceives the idea of establishing teaching birth centers offering no-cost care in low-resource areas in the Philippines. Mercy in Action, Inc., is a charitable, nonprofit organization that establishes, funds, and operates birth centers and medical missions, and trains other midwives to do the same all over the world. The chapter discusses the model developed to operate birth centers in the Philippines, in which midwifery students could get their training while their tuition funds the operation of the center, providing a symbiotic situation wherein midwifery care can be given at no charge to the pregnant women. The mission of the midwives of Mercy in Action is to reduce maternal and infant risk, and to protect and defend the dignity of women, by demonstrating Christ's love, compassion, and mercy in action.

Keywords: Mercy in Action; midwives; medical missions; birth centers; infant risk

Chapter.  11576 words. 

Subjects: Medical Anthropology

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