RECENT DEVELOPMENTS IN PROFESSIONAL MIDWIFERY EDUCATION AND CREDENTIALING

Authors

  • Nancy Kraus CNM, MSN,

  • Judith T. Fullerton PHD, CNM, FACNM,

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    • Judith T. Fullerton obtained her BSN from Wayne State University, the MS and certificate in nurse-midwifery from Columbia University, and the PhD in health education/health administration from Temple University. Dr. Fullerton serves as associate dean for the Graduate Nursing Program, University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio. She is chair of the Research Committee for the ACNM Certification Council and a Fellow of the American College of Nurse-Midwives.

  • Joyce E. Roberts PHD, CNM, FACNM,

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    • Joyce Roberts obtained her BSN from the University of Wyoming, the MS and certificate in nurse-midwifery from the University of Utah, and the PhD in nursing from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Dr. Roberts serves as head of the Department of Maternal/Child Nursing at the University of Illinois, Chicago. She is the President of the ACNM, and a Fellow of the American College of Nurse-Midwives.

  • Wendy L. Valhoff CNM, MSN

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    • Wendy L. Valhoff obtained the BSN from Eastern Kentucky University, the MSN from the University of Kentucky, and a certificate in nurse-midwifery and family nursing from the Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing. Ms. Valhoff is an active practitioner of nurse-midwifery and serves as clinical instructor for the nurse-midwifery education program at the University of Michigan and the Community-based Nurse-Midwifery Education Program. She is chair of the Precertification Section of the ACNM Division of Education, which administers the Assured Equivalency Option Program.


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ABSTRACT

The American College of Nurse-Midwives, (ACNM), as a membership organization, and the ACNM Certification Council (ACC), as a credentialing agency, pursue independent but allied missions of expanding access to education for the practice of midwifery, while adhering to established standards of quality for education and clinical practice. The following recent actions taken by these agencies are presented for the information of the membership. 1) The Assured Equivalency Option, a mechanism through which nurse-midwives educated in countries other than the United States can demonstrate their competency and, as needed, acquire additional requisite didactic knowledge or clinical skills, leading to eligibility for national certification examination, is detailed. 2) The rationale for adoption of the multiple-choice format for the criterion-referenced national certification examination in nurse-midwifery and the methods used to determine the validity and reliability of the examination are described. 3) The award of a time-limited credential to those newly certified is offered as a policy statement of the ACC. 4) Deliberations and decisions leading to development of guidelines for the accreditation of non-nurse-midwifery education programs and credentialing as a professional midwife are recounted.

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