4th Annual Maternal Health Panel
On April 12th at 6:30pm, the Santa Barbara chapter of the International Cesarean Awareness Network will hold their “4th Annual Maternal Health Panel” at the beautiful Unitarian Church downtown, with a focus on hot topics in birth, including but not limited to, birthing people’s rights, options and evidence based care.
Over the course of the last few years, ICAN-SB has been proudly working towards overturning the VBAC “ban” that Cottage Hospital implemented, with our emphasis being to offer choices in birth to the consumer. These are critical times in the world regarding maternal health, and the birthing community of Santa Barbara is not immune to the detrimental effects of lack of sufficient care in birthing options. More and more we are seeing patients stripped of their rights for medical autonomy, and we are eagerly reaching across the aisle to the powers that be at Cottage Hospital in hopes to spark a conversation that is open, constructive, and puts into motion the plan to support ACOG’s current support and updated statement on VBAC, and gives the consumer their right to pursue a VBAC if desired. To date, our attempts have failed to get Cottage Hospital and important figures in the medical community who influence the ban, to provide the community with a logical, medically sound reason to keep the ban. We, as the board of ICAN, dutifully represent the birthing person, the consumer, and are dedicated to continue trying to create an open dialogue with providers we consider colleagues.
The event will begin with our “mom panel,” which gives space for birthing people and their partner if desired, to share their experiences in searching for the right provider for their birth. Whether it was a VBAC in Ventura (due to the current VBAC “ban” at Cottage Hospital), a breech birth at St. John’s, or maybe an elective cesarean with the plan for a family centered experience at Cottage; whatever it may be, we hope these stories are enlightening, encouraging, and engaging for the audience, and the community at large.
This panel will also bring together some of the most sought after names in the L.A. birth community, alongside some of Santa Barbara’s medical providers, creating a lively discussion that will touch on the most important subjects concerning the consumer. After we hear from the medical providers, a question and answer will take place, opening the floor to individuals eager to learn more about maternal health both on a macro and micro level.
I want to close by saying this: Information is the instigator for change. Constructive conversations are paramount to uniting communities, and individuals alike. There is not a more important discussion than birth, and maternal health. We are all here because someone brought us forth.