Resources of Note

Online Consumer Information on Birth Providers / Services - For years, consumers have enthusiastically shared online reviews of movies, restaurants, products and services, but readily available information about maternity care providers and birth settings was nearly unattainable. No longer! As part of the Transparency in Maternity Care Project, the Coalition for Improving Maternity Services (CIMS) developed The Birth Survey as an online resource for sharing consumer reviews of doctors, midwives, hospitals, and birth centers, and also for learning about the choices and birth experiences of others, and viewing data about hospital and birth center standard practices and intervention rates. The Birth Survey is now accessible online nationwide in the United States. The Birth Survey is free and available 24/7. Women who have birthed babies within the past three years can take the anonymous online consumer feedback survey. It asks them a variety of questions about their satisfaction with their birth care provider and institution, and includes their feedback in the results, allowing other women to benefit from their experiences. In addition to the consumer data, the website will be listing obstetrical intervention data for each hospital as provided by state Departments of Health. The Birth Survey is designed to help women find quality providers and birth settings that are the best match for their needs and lifestyles. Providers and facilities will also be able to use The Birth Survey as a consumer feedback and quality improvement tool. Demo The Birth Survey at http://www.thebirthsurveydemo.com/Terms.html

Preemie Matters is a monthly e-newsletter from March of Dimes for anyone working to prevent preterm birth, generate awareness of surrounding issues or support families dealing with prematurity. Consumers are invited to use it to highlight your activities and help promote research, programs and educational offerings of value. The easiest way to sign up at the moment is to take Judy Meehan's generous offer: send an email with "Preemie Matters" as the subject to info@hmhb.org and she'll get you signed up (saving you hassling with Survey Monkey!).

"A Fateful First Act" is the title of a May/June 2009 Psychology Today article by Emily Laber-Warren that can serve those of you who'd like to provide clients, patients, students or trainees with a concise, persuasive, accessible primer on prenatal psychology and health. The magazine cover bills this as "A new view of life in utero." Photocopy at your local library (old school!), or access online at http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/pto-20090429-000003.xml. Ditto a similar article published just as this issue heads to press, July 1, 2009, in USA Today. P&P has really made it to the mainstream!! http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2009-06-30-prenatalcover_N.htm?csp=34