This information is useful for adults
Closeup of a baby's feet, one possibly delivery by a midwife

Yale Medicine's approach to childbirth combines centuries-old traditions and advanced medical practices to provide families with the very best care possible.

For millennia, childbirth took place in the home, supervised by traditional birth attendants and community midwives. But after World War II, here in the United States, childbirth increasingly became the province of doctors. With that shift, medical interventions such as the cesarean section and anesthesia increased dramatically. While infant mortality has plummeted since the shift, many worry that this approach over-medicalizes the natural process of birth.

At Yale Medicine, our certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) occupy a middle ground between these two extremes. They are medical professionals who can provide a full range of health services for women (from adolescence to menopause), yet they focus on a holistic, natural approach.