Midwife Sues Indiana A.G.'s Office To Clarify Legal Standing Of Nonlicensed Midwives
Jennifer Williams, a midwife in Shelbyville, Ind., who faces charges of practicing medicine and midwifery without a license, has filed a lawsuit against the Indiana Attorney General\'s Office to clarify the legal standing of nonlicensed midwives in the state, the AP/WTHR reports (AP/WTHR, 5/23). Williams in June 2005 conducted the home birth of an infant who died. Williams faces charges of practicing medicine and midwifery without a license but does not face criminal charges of causing or contributing to the infant\'s death. Indiana prohibits the practice of midwifery by individuals other than licensed doctors and nurses (Kaiser Daily Women\'s Health Policy Report, 4/4). The state allows midwives to practice if they are nurses with specialized training in obstetrics. The lawsuit asks the court to rule that a nursing license is not required to practice midwifery and to prohibit the state from prosecuting midwives without a valid nursing license under charges of practicing nursing or medicine without a license, the AP/WTHR reports. \"The law is a mess,\" Williams\' attorney, Michael Ausbrook, said, adding, \"[W]e\'re not claiming we know exactly what it is, but we\'re pretty sure of what it\'s not.\" Staci Schneider, spokesperson for Attorney General Steve Carter (R), said, \"We\'ll have to take a closer look at this to see how we\'ll proceed\" (AP/WTHR, 5/23).
\"Reprinted with permission from http://www.kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report, search the archives, or sign up for email delivery at http://www.kaisernetwork.org/dailyreports/healthpolicy. The Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation . © 2005 Advisory Board Company and Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.
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