A movement to make midwifery legal in Iowa has cleared one legislative hurdle, but it faces an uncertain future. The House Human Resources Committee has approved a bill which grants “certification” to midwives who complete special training, testing and supervised work. Beverly Francis of Mount Sterling is a midwife who says midwives face powerful opposition from the medical establishment. Midwife Dawn Finney of Iowa City says midwives help women who want to have their babies at home.Diera Flecksing of Cedar Rapids is studying to be a midwife. She breast-fed her nine-month-old daughter during the committee meeting, and shed a few tears when the bill passed. She says the bill stands for everything she is working toward.Critics say it’s important to have babies delivered in a hospital, where the best in medical technology can be employed if there are complications. A doctor who’s a state Senator is pushing to require absolutely all Iowa children be immunized. Iowa law permits an exeption for religious reasons. Senator John Redwine, a republican from Sioux City, some very deadly and damaging diseases now can be avoided with proper vaccinations.Redwine says all children need to be protected from preventable diseases like polio. And Redwine says immunizations help protect the general public.Redwine’s bill which would eliminate the religious exemption for immunizations awaits action in the 50-member Senate.
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