Pacific Birth Collective

  Island of Maui

Maui Midwives and Pale Keiki

What is a Midwife?   A Midwife is a health care professional who cares for women during their pregnancy, labor, birth and throughout their childbearing years for routine care.  They are trained to support normal physiologic childbirth as well as to recognize and intervene when things extend beyond the scope of normal.  Attending laboring women, they typically carry standard medical tools such as anti-bleeding medications and Oxygen.   

Care by a midwife should be a trusting relationship with a knowledgeable professional who supports your autonomy and empowers you with knowledge to take charge of your own health.   Midwifery care on Maui is becoming increasingly accessible.   We recently broke new ground with the first Nurse Midwife, CNM being granted hospital privileges at Maui Health Systems.   She practices out of Malama I Ke Ola medical clinic in Wailuku.  The 2019 legislative session passed SB1033 regulating and licensing the practice of midwifery care in the state of Hawaii.  To find out how this will impact your access to care we encourage you to reach out and discuss these changes with midwives practicing in your community.

Find Tips for interviewing Midwives at the bottom of the page.  And don't get confused by all those letters! 

Acronym Definitions

CPM—Certified Professional Midwife

CNM—Certified Nurse-Midwife

DEM—Direct Entry Midwife

LM—Licensed Midwife

LMT—Licensed Massage Therapist

RN—Registered Nurse


Finding and Interviewing Midwives

We recommend interviewing several to find one that is a good fit for you and your family.   Most Midwives work for a flat fee or have a sliding scale and you will likely be paying for your midwife without the assistance of insurance. You will want to make sure they offer the services, attitude, and philosophy you agree with. The ability to honestly express yourself and concerns to your midwife, or any health care professional, is central to being able to make an informed decision concerning your care. Make sure that you choose a midwife who you trust and who will be available when you need them, respect your opinions, values, and listen. The following are some suggestions for finding the best midwife for you.

  • Ask friends and family for a recommendation.
  • Midwives come from a myriad of training and experience backgrounds you should ask what certifications and qualifications she has earned.
  • Check their references.
  • Be sure and ask questions about their fees and services.
  • Write down any specific concerns you have about your pregnancy.
  • Talk about your views on labor.
  • Midwives don’t administer pain medication; ask what techniques they use to help if you are finding it difficult to cope with the intensity of labor.
  • Ask under what circumstances she recommends moving the homebirth into the hospital (this is called a transfer).
  • If a transfer is necessary will she go with you to the hospital and will she stay with you as long as she is needed to act as your advocate ?
  • What routine labs does she perform?
  • Does she prefer that you have dual care, meaning that you maintain a relationship with an OB practice throughout your pregnancy?
  • How many days overdue does she feel comfortable with you going before she suggests you induce?
  • Discuss your birth plan, particularly if it includes a water birth. Some midwives offer birth tubs at an additional fee.
  • What part of the island is she coming from? How long would it take her to get to your home during peak traffic times?
  • Find out her accessibility. How quickly does she typically call clients back? Is she available through email for non-emergency questions?
  • How many births does she typically do in a month and how many other women does she have due around the same time as you?
  • Does she have a backup midwife in case of an emergency?
  • Often midwives have at least one assistant at the labor; if so, you will want to meet these other participants.
  • Even if you are using a midwife for a homebirth, It is recommend you find an OB you and your midwife can consult with during the pregnancy if you so choose.
  • Take a tour of the hospital so that you can feel more comfortable if the need for plan B arises.  

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