January 2, 2022
Albany, NY

Governor Hochul Signs Legislation to Enhance Patient Experience In Midwifery Birth Centers

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Governor Hochul Signs Legislation to Enhance Patient Experience In Midwifery Birth Centers
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Legislation S.1414A/A.259 Streamlines the Licensure Process for Accredited Midwifery Birth Centers

Governor Kathy Hochul has announced the signing of legislation S.1414A/A.259 which ensures regulations governing the licensing, establishment, and operation of midwifery birth centers are consistent with the Midwifery Practice Act or the standards of national accrediting bodies specializing in midwifery birth centers.

“Those who give birth deserve to be able to choose the best setting for themselves to do so,” Governor Hochul said. “For too long, midwifery centers have faced undue obstacles on their paths to opening, creating a severe lack of these practices throughout our state. I am proud to sign legislation to remove these barriers and give New Yorkers welcoming children into this world a wider range of options for where they will deliver.” 

Legislation S.1414A/A.259 will provide a streamlined process for an operating certificate as an Article 28 facility for a midwifery birth center which is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization.

Senator Gustavo Rivera said, “By streamlining the process by which birthing centers are established and operate in New York, we are actively working towards reversing our State’s devastating maternal mortality crisis. It is our responsibility to ensure pregnant women, particularly women of color who have historically faced significant health disparities and sheer medical racism, receive the professional and safe maternal care they deserve. I want to thank Governor Hochul for signing this important bill into law as I strongly believe that these midwifery centers will allow women to give birth with dignity."

Assemblymember Richard Gottfried said, "Midwives are a well-established licensed profession in New York, with a long record of success. Midwife-led birth centers promote wellness-based birth in a supportive environment. Research shows that these facilities have fewer labor inductions, outstanding safety records, and successful parent bonding outcomes. This bill will improve access to these facilities in an appropriately regulated environment. I thank the many midwife advocates, Governor Hochul, Senate sponsor Gustavo Rivera, and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie for their work turning this bill into law.”

Contact the Governor's Press Office

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