Certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) are licensed health care practitioners educated in both nursing and midwifery. They provide primary health care to women , including preconception care, prenatal care, labor and delivery, after-birth care, assistance with family planning decisions, gynecological exams, management of common gynecologic problems, menopausal management and counseling in health maintenance and disease prevention.
Dr. Sattar developed a great respect for nurse-midwifery during his early studies and practice in Britain. He found such benefits from the midwife-patient relationship that he incorporated the discipline into his own practice. The nurse-midwives work collaboratively with the physicians in this practice and have very much the same functions as physicians, with the exception of performing surgeries.
Most pregnant women who are seeking out a nurse-midwife are generally hoping for a natural childbirth. However, all patients have a choice in this practice.
"We leave the patient with the freedom to choose. We provide an individualized care," says Dr. Sattar. "A nurse-midwife is a tremendous support to the woman during labor. The patient can still have whatever type of birthing experience they desire, whether natural (drug-free) or with the aid of medications. A midwife is extra support for deliveries — sometimes spanning over many hours — that the physician is not always able to provide."
A benefit of having both physicians and nurse-midwives in the same practice is that if a woman chooses to work with a nurse-midwife, but develops complications that require the expertise of the physician (such as surgery), the nurse-midwife can still be part of the process for support. It is a smooth and positive transition for the patient, rather than a complete change in care.