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SSM Health changes initial decision, will not cut midwife program

Published: Oct. 7, 2021 at 11:26 AM CDT|Updated: Oct. 7, 2021 at 7:21 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - SSM Health will not be ending its midwifery program as they initially planned.

In a statement released Thursday, SSM Health says the decision was made after hearing feedback from the community and further discussions with its midwifery team.

“We have learned over the past week that we need to learn more,” stated Kim Sveum, SSM Health Communications Regional Director. “We will take this opportunity to thoughtfully discuss and determine a path to an improved program that serves our community’s women’s health needs.”

Last week, SSM Health notified its four nurse-midwife team that the program would end at the end of 2021. On Tuesday, SSM Health said it would continue services until a “new, sustainable model was in place.”

NBC15 News spoke with one of the four nurse midwives in the program after the news broke Thursday morning.

“There were some tears of joy,” Amber Latsch, Certified Nurse Midwife at SSM Health said. “For all four of us this is a labor of love. This program is something we have put a lot of ourselves into, we didn’t know what to expect going into this meeting, this is the best we could have hoped for.”

FULL STATEMENT FROM SSM HEALTH ON OCT. 7

After hearing the feedback from our community and through further discussion with our midwifery team, SSM Health has decided to continue our program. To be clear, SSM Health’s Midwifery Program will not be ending as previously planned.

We will take the feedback our community has provided as an opportunity to strengthen and evolve the program through input and conversation with our team, our patients and the community. We are committed to the profession of midwifery and choices for our patients. We hope to have meaningful conversations moving forward on how to continue to best meet the needs of the communities we serve.

Our ultimate goal in this decision is to work together with our midwifery team and community women’s health partners to find a long-term, sustainable solution that allows area women reliable access to a full scope of midwifery services and in-hospitals births through SSM Health.

We have learned over the past week that we need to learn more. We will take this opportunity to thoughtfully discuss and determine a path to an improved program that serves our community’s women’s health needs. We apologize for the confusion or anxiety this caused. We ask our current patients to call our Nurse Navigator at 608-294-6246 with questions.

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