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FROM NURSING OUTPOSTS TO CONTEMPORARY MIDWIFERY IN 20TH CENTURY CANADA

Authors

  • Kate Plummer CNM, MSN

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    • Kate Plummer is a 1999 graduate of the nurse-midwifery program at Yale University School of Nursing where she wrote her master's thesis, “Government-Sanctioned Midwifery in Canada, 1919–1991.” She recently began working with the National Health Service Corps in northwestern Minnesota, fulfilling her dream of bringing midwifery to small communities with large amounts of snow.


Kate Plummer, CNM, MSN, R. R. #1, Box 168B, Fosston, MN 56542.

ABSTRACT

Knowledge of the history of one's profession is always related to the informed practice of the profession and can aid midwifery in its expansion and recognition. Understanding the long and diverse history of Canadian midwifery expands the appreciation by midwives in the United States of midwifery north of our border, which, although newly regulated, has much experience to share. This article documents the evolution of midwifery in Canada during the 20th century. Government-sanctioned midwifery prior to 1991, the year when Ontario passed legislation to regulate midwifery for the first time in modern Canadian history, was limited to isolated, usually northern, frontier and outpost regions of Canada, but the providers who practiced it were well-educated and important figures in the broader history of midwifery.

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