Jill Duggar Dillard and her husband, Derick Dillard, have left the mission field in El Salvador to spend an unspecified amount of time back home in the United States. However, Jill isn’t spending her entire vacation relaxing and taking advantage of Jana Duggar’s babysitting services. According to the Counting On star, she’s also making use of her Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) certification. Jill recently revealed that she helped out during a home birth, and the identity of the midwife she assisted may cause a bit of controversy.
On Tuesday, Jill Duggar shared an Instagram photo of the baby she helped deliver.
“I got to help deliver this little cutie this morning! So special! #childrenareablessingfromthelord #earlymorningbirth #midwife #homebirth,” Jill captioned the photo.
The same picture was shared on the Facebook page for A Mommy’s Butterfly (AMB) Midwifery, a business located in Tulsa, Oklahoma. According to whoever posted the photo, Jill Duggar previously helped deliver the baby’s older sibling.
“We’re tickled pink and glad To say, their little girl was FINALLY Born this day! We introduce Aspen born at 4:48 am weighing 6lbs 4oz 18″ long!! Happy to have big brother’s baby catcher back to help mama again!!” the post accompanying the photo read.
According to SheKnows, AMB Midwifery is owned by Venessa Giron, a midwife Jill Duggar trained with when she was working toward obtaining her CPM certification. Giron made headlines back in April when one of her clients spoke out about her horrific home birth experience. The client, Tiffany Nance, told In Touch Weekly that she hired Giron in February 2014 when the midwife’s practice was still located in the Duggars’ hometown of Tontitown, Arkansas. Jill Duggar assisted with the delivery of Nance’s daughter Jozzie.
Nance alleged that she begged Duggar to call an ambulance three times during the excruciating 14 hours that she was in labor. Nance was “crying and screaming out in pain,” but Giron would not allow Duggar to dial 9-1-1. Nance also said that Giron failed to recognize the signs of Group B Strep, an infection that can be extremely harmful to newborns. Nance’s infant daughter was later diagnosed with cerebral palsy, and she ended up spending 54 days in the hospital.
“She failed to recognize the signs of a group b strep infection then proceeded to not transfer her until 2 hours after the start of respiratory distress started,” Nance wrote on Facebook. “If my baby would have been treated within the first hour it could have prevented her near death and now cerebral palsy due to multiple brain bleeds.”
Venessa Giron disputed Nance’s allegations, but SheKnows reports that Giron had her lay midwife license revoked in Arkansas because of Jozzie’s botched birth. Jill Duggar received much of her hands-on midwife training from Giron, and this worries Tiffany Nance.
“If Venessa’s the only person she’s trained under, I don’t think she’s qualified,” Nance said of Jill Duggar’s midwifery skills.
Venessa Giron later moved her midwifery practice to Tulsa, Oklahoma, which is about 100 miles away from Jill’s home in Arkansas. According to the Midwives Alliance of North America, Oklahoma and Arkansas are two of the 28 states where Certified Professional Midwives are allowed to practice. In the rest of the U.S., midwives must be Certified Nurse-Midwives (CNMs). A CNM has to obtain an undergraduate degree in nursing, complete an accredited CNM program, and pass a board-certified exam. Once upon a time, Jill Duggar wanted to go to nursing school. This would have been the first step toward becoming a CNM. However, as Patheos reports, she eventually gave up on this dream and decided to take the easier route of becoming a CPM.
CPMs only have to obtain their GEDs, and they do not train in hospitals. Instead, they are required to attend a certain number of home births with a licensed lay midwife. Jill Duggar had to take an exam last year before getting her CPM certificate, but it was not board certified. In Arkansas, a CPM then has to apply for a lay midwife license and renew it every two years. However, lay midwives are not licensed in Oklahoma.
It’s surprising that Jill is currently helping Venessa for two reasons. For one thing, she previously said that she wasn’t going to make use of her CPM license as long as she has children of her own to take care of.
“My prayer in pursuing midwifery early on was to make wise use of my single years while gaining valuable skills that I may someday use on the mission field,” she wrote on the Dillard Family website. “Although I don’t plan on practicing while I have little ones of my own at home, I know the skills I have already learned have benefitted [sic] me immensely and I may be able to use them in other ways, such as teaching, down the road.”
It’s also surprising that Jill and Venessa are still friends after Venessa criticized the decisions that Jill and her sister Jessa made during their home births.
“Both Jessa and Jill made decisions that do not fairly reflect home birth nor the care of the midwives in this state,” Venessa wrote in a statement that was posted on the Duggar Family Blog.
Are you happy that Jill Duggar now realizes that she can be a mother and a midwife at the same time, or do you agree with Tiffany Nance’s claim that the Counting On star isn’t qualified to catch babies? Share your thoughts below.
[Featured Image by TLC]