birthing center

Health
8:36 am
Tue September 3, 2013

Hardin County Woman Appeals Permit Denial for Birthing Center

A nurse midwife has appealed a hearing officer's decision to deny a permit for a proposed alternative birthing center in Elizabethtown.

The News-Enterprise reports Mary Carol Akers filed the appeal in Franklin Circuit Court arguing that the decision to deny the permit was "arbitrary and capricious."

An administrative hearing officer denied the permit in July, months after a hearing that detailed support and opposition for what would have been the first such facility in the state.

Akers said women should be offered a choice while three area hospitals argued that the facility wasn't needed.

Hearing officer Kris M. Carlton ruled that the birthing center's business model and use projections weren't reasonable and that Akers hadn't shown a need for the facility in Elizabethtown.

Health
8:05 am
Sat March 9, 2013

Midwife Aims to Open First Alternative Birthing Center in Kentucky

Midwife Mary Akers delivers a baby boy January 19th.

Mary Carol Akers looks in the trunk of her car before she leaves for work to make sure she has all the necessary tools for her job. 

"You can see the oxygen tank, medications. I've got catheter kits and IVs, anything mother and baby might need," she says.

Akers makes a lot of house calls. She is a certified midwife serving Hardin and surrounding counties in central Kentucky. The retired Army lieutenant colonel has delivered babies at military hospitals throughout the world, and over the course of her career, she estimates she has delivered six thousand babies. 

In the car with Akers on her way to a house call, she explains why some women choose not to give birth at a hospital.

"I think that one of the things about birth centers and midwifery is high touch and low tech, and high touch and low tech require a lot more work than putting them on the monitor and going to the desk to watch it from there," explains Akers.  "I've also seen women go to the hospital with a birth plan in mind and be bullied out of it."

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