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The Birth Festival 2023; Rights and obligations - an ethical, professional and legal deep dive into maternity care

It is possible to buy a STREAMING-TICKET if you can't come to Drammen but still want to join. The price is 700 NOK and the ticket is personal. Link to the event will be sent by e-mail the day before (sept.3)

The conference is supported by NSF, The Norwegian Midwifery Association and DNJ; The Norwegian Midwifery Association.

23 years of experience has shown me that women who become pregnant and are about to give birth have surprisingly few opportunities, choices and rights in practice. It is about how the service is organised, but also about how procedures and recommendations are presented and emphasised to the woman.

It can be anything from offers of follow-up during pregnancy to offers of intervention in childbirth. "Everyone" agrees that there should be informed consent, but if the information is not provided and the consent is about being persuaded to accept, then the opportunity to make an informed choice disappears.

Could it be that the organisation of the service makes trust more difficult between healthcare personnel and the woman and her family?

The possible consequences of a lack of trust both ways are many: The women describe that their needs are not met – they experience distrust in relation to their own knowledge of their own body, birth and the baby in the womb. Overdiagnosis and overtreatment – just in case – is a growing problem. Some women experience pressure to accept interventions they do not want.

The midwife's autonomy is under increasing pressure. What does it do to the midwife and midwifery service when time and opportunity for reflection on their own experiences and working conditions disappear?

Speakers who have agreed to attend are: Hermine Hayes-Klein; American lawyer specialized in human rights. Amali Lokugamage; British obstetrician focusing on women's rights and how professionalism is presented. Corine Verhoeven, Midwife and researcher focusing on respect in maternity care.

Julianne Joakimsen Rydberg, historian focusing on Matrescence who is described as the biological, psychological, physical, social, political and spiritual change that occurs in a woman when she becomes a mother. Johanne Sundby; gynecologist and professor of community medicine. Cathrine Trulsvik, midwife, leader of BirthRights Norway and organizer of the Birth Festival. Julika Hudson; Midwife and PhD student - researches informed consent and self-determination in pregnant and postpartum women.

Dr. Kathryn Gutteridge is a long-time midwife from the UK. She is passionate about midwifery care with the woman and her family at the centre where subjects and individual adaptation are in focus.

"This year's Birth Festival 2023 invites you to a thorough ethical and legal deep dive into maternity care. What are the rights and obligations of women and healthcare workers in connection with childbirth? How is trust established? The importance of trust in order to quality assure the service. Who decides what is professionally justifiable? What do the terms "informed consent" and "necessity" mean in the context of childbirth? Can we incorporate human rights into maternity care? Can we talk about "Me-too" in maternity care?"

Read more about each speaker here:






08.00 – 08.30 Registration, coffee and tea

08.30 – 08.40 Welcome by Oda Weider-Krog

08.40 – 09.10 Cathrine Trulsvik. Midwife. Guidelines, professional disagreement and women's right to co-determination, information and choice

9:10 a.m. – 9:55 a.m. Hermine Hayes-Klein. Advocate and founder of Human Rights in Childbirth

9:55 a.m. –10:25 a.m. Julika Hudson. Midwife from Ireland - Can challenges around informed consent be seen in the context of obstetric violence?

Screening of trailer for Bunad guerrilla film premiering in October

10.30 –11.00 BREAK

11.00 –11.45 Amali Lokugamage, Obstetrician, on professionalism and the use and abuse of policies and procedures

11.45 – 12.15 Julianne Joakimsen Rydberg. Historian. About matrescence; The biological, psychological, physical, social, political, and spiritual change that occurs in a woman when she becomes a mother.

12.15 – 12.45 Johanne Sundby. Obstetrician and professor of community medicine. On women's health in a historical and global perspective

12.45 –13.35 LUNCH

13.35 – 13.55 HOPE by Åsmund Seip and Hoanna; About otherness, belonging and how the seeds we sow show that there is always hope.

13.55 –14.10 Presentation of this year's OXYTOCIN Award to midwife Brit Oline Forberg

14.10 –14.50 Kathryn Gutteridge, Jordmor, UK "Midwives - the hand that rocks the cradle"

14.50 –15.30 Corine Verhoeven, Midwife, UK and the Netherlands Respect and trust in maternity care

15.30 - 15.40 Oda Weider-Krog about the book "Becoming a mom"

15.40 - 15.50 Berit Mortensen, midwife about the book Barselbrølet – where do we go next?

15.50 –16.10 BREAK

16.10 – 16.50 Panel discussion with the speakers – discussion w/questions from the audience

16.50 –17.00 Closing

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