Vickie Sorensen’s victims should not be buried twice

Dr Amy Tutuer of the Skeptical OB has a very apt saying about home birth deaths- the babies get buried twice. First in the ground by their parents, and then by the home birth midwives who wish to bury the memory of what happened. It does not have to be that way- take action, call your legislators and let them know that you don’t find it acceptable that its harder to legally drive a car than it is to legally deliver a baby in our state.

It may seem like common sense that the law changes after this, that legislators will wake up to the problems with voluntary licensing and voluntary insurance for midwives, but that did not happen last time a horrific home birth death happened in Utah (at the hands of serially negligent midwife Valerie El Halta). The reason nothing changed is that Utah midwives stand up for each other regardless of how heinous their actions might have been. Right now, instead of asking themselves how this could have been allowed to happen or how to prevent it the next time, they are raising funds for Vickie Sorensen’s defense. They are denying reality by trying to say that this is persecution or that there is no merit to any of the charges (we will have to wait and see, but I have yet to see a midwife charged in a case like this that is let free- there are simply too many witnesses in home birth deaths).

They also have a leg up because legislators like Holly Richardson support home birth, even after the bill she passed cost a life (now we know its cost many more than that). I brought this to her attention and she ignored me and my concerns. She is running for house district 57 in pleasant grove, and will no doubt push the home birth agenda if she is elected. She is a major reason this state of affairs exists in the first place, but she has washed her hands of all responsibility. You will see that she more or less blames parents for not being diligent enough in checking references, but in both Utah home birth deaths the midwives in question have glowing reviews from a large number of people and professional achievement (El Halta wrote for Midwifery Today, Vickie Sorensen was integral to the original Utah Midwives Association). The Utah Midwives Association (now the Utah Midwives Organization) had a meeting about how to best cover this up and prevent any laws from being passed. The El Halta death happened very shortly before the legislative session opened so no one else was organized enough to change the law.  It seems that the lack of action from that death has unfortunately allowed other deadly midwives to operate legally.

These babies need you and me to contact everyone we can to try and prevent the next death. Midwives refuse to police themselves and prefer to have a total lack of supervision or guidelines for their practices. There is actually an official guide for home birth midwives to avoid accountability for deaths they attend, it is called From Calling to Courtroom. You can read it here. You will notice that a lot of what Vickie Sorensen is accused of doing- lying on medical records, interfering with EMTs, etc is encouraged in this book. This is standard operating procedure for home birth midwives.  You and I are the only thing standing between negligent midwives and the next preventable death- please help, it will only take a few minutes of your time.

You can sign a petition demanding licenses and insurance for midwives here. 


5 thoughts on “Vickie Sorensen’s victims should not be buried twice

  1. Pingback: it wouldn’t happen to me | Ex Natural Childbirth Advocates

  2. This page is entirely deceptive in leading the reader to believe that midwives are deadly. Vickie Sorenson safely delivered three of my children and it would have been more, but she referred my risky pregnancies to a doctor. The doctors put me and my babies into plenty of danger with some very stupid decisions. The only times my babies were delivered without trauma was with midwives. I had three different midwives because of locations, and Vickie Sorenson is the best of all of them. Her conduct was always far more professional and safe than that of all the doctors I had to deal with, a couple of which offered to abort my babies. That’s deadly.

    • Your experiences are anecdotes. You cannot assume that you were the rule rather than the exception, and this is why studies are conducted. The data (even the stuff from midwives themselves, like MANA stats) show that home birth with a midwife is deadlier than birth with a doctor in a hospital. Its just a fact.

      I’m glad your babies are all okay. Imagine if they hadn’t been! you would have to watch the midwifery community raise funds for.the midwife that was responsible for the death.

    • Lara- I used to be a part of natural child birth advocacy. I am not unfamiliar with your beliefs, I lived it. I changed my mind when facts did not line up with the claims. It was a hard process because NCB, the idea of home birth, was important to me emotionally. I took a doula course from the MCU founder. My feelings don’t determine facts though, so I just had to cope with the loss. As did former CPM Leigh Frandsen, who recently released a shocking document that details the unethical behavior that is endemic in home birth midwifery practice.

      This is what it is about. Its about cronyism and illegal practices and a lack of accountability. Its not okay.

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