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J Perinat Educ. 2010 Spring;19(2):11-5.

After a Cesarean…What's a Birth Professional to Do?

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DESIRRE ANDREWS is President of the International Cesarean Awareness Network (ICAN). As the owner of Preparing For Birth, LLC (, she works as a childbirth educator, a labor doula, and a lactation educator in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and is an avid blogger on birth-related topics. GRETCHEN HUMPHRIES is Advocacy Director of ICAN as well as a veterinarian working in emergency and critical care in southeastern Michigan. She has written extensively on birth topics, and many of her essays can be found online at


The discrepancy between the evidence supporting vaginal birth after cesarean and actual medical practice illuminates the larger issues of evidence-based care versus current obstetrical practice. Although the reasons for the disconnect between what we know to be healthy birth practices and what women actually experience are multiple and complex, a commitment to providing accurate education, truly client-centered support, and active patient advocacy will give women the ability to insist on best practice care for themselves and their babies. The International Cesarean Awareness Network believes that all childbirth professionals and advocates share a responsibility to promote change and must work together to be effective.

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