GOLD Learning Speakers


Betty-Anne Daviss, RM, MA

  • Speaker Type: GOLD Midwifery 2019, 2019
  • Country: Canada

Betty-Anne Daviss, RM, MA is a midwife with over 40 years of practice, a researcher in epidemiology and the social sciences, and a professor in Women’s Studies. She co-authored the first large prospective home birth study of CPMs in North America published in the BMJ (2005) that continues to be accessed 500-800 times a month and has attracted 250,000 viewers online internationally. She was the co-principal investigator and principal author for the Frankfurt study comparing vaginal breeches born with mothers upright to on the back. The latter article has reached the top 5% bracket for responses on all scholarly content worldwide, across all subject areas, including books, journal articles, presentations, conference proceedings and the #1 article published in the International Journal of Gynecology and Obstetrics in 2017. The only midwife in Canada who has acquired hospital privileges to attend breech births without a transfer to obstetrics, Betty-Anne has attended over 150 planned vaginal breech births, and provided plenaries on breech in Canada, the US, Britain, the Netherlands, the Czech Republic, Argentina, Australia, and Brazil. She has testified for 10 midwifery hearings/court cases and 11 state and 3 provincial legislative processes. Some of her published articles are available at

CE Library Presentation(s) Available Online:
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Speaking Truth to Power: Childbirth Models on the Human Rights’ Frontier
This presentation traces how national and international efforts to improve childbirth care have graduated from disenfranchised social movements in the 1970s and 1980s to entrenchment of human rights in childbirth in UN declarations and the courts. Dynamic communities around the world that are rejecting the imposition of status quo dysfunctional pregnancy and childbirth systems and replacing them with more appropriate models of care will be highlighted. Using unorthodox means, such as employing non physicians to do cesareans, placing a psychologist instead of an obstetrician in charge of the caseroom, choosing to support instead of arrest and eliminate the traditional midwives, I present these iconoclastic models that work even under dire circumstances, in countries as diverse as China, Canada, India, Afghanistan, Turkey, Hungary, Tanzania, Palestine and Mexico. Tackling the problems of the neoliberal drive for privatization and centralization of health care services and the bullying between and among the professions, I demonstrate how the use of radical, conscious change in birth practices, puts practitioners at their peril who choose to take their stand with childbearers, but places power and control in the right hands.
Accreditation, Main Category, Product Type
Presentations: 13  |  Hours / CE Credits: 13.5  |  Viewing Time: 8 Weeks
Hours / CE Credits: 1.25 (details)  |  Categories:
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Note: Currently only available through a bundled series of lectures
Vaginal Breech Birth: A Workshop on New Evidence and Techniques to Bring it Back
In both high and low resource countries, misleading research and ongoing assumptions about the safety of cesarean section have attempted to relegate the practice of vaginal breech birth to an ancient art, useful only for the historical archives. In spite of the fact that new research reports that cesarean section is associated with higher risk of death or neuro developmental issues in children of 2 years of age, obstetric units in North America have only feebly embraced this reality and done little to act on it. In the absence of choice in obstetric units, and as obstetricians have become more deskilled at normal vaginal breech birth, midwives' clients, along with their midwives, have been at the helm of the movement to return vaginal breech birth to North America. This has involved the rethinking of the mechanisms of vaginal breech birth, the search for a way to demonstrate their success through research, and a way to revive the practice. This presentation will cover the history, politics, and clinical epidemiology of vaginal breech birth. Videos and mannequins will be used to demonstrate new maneuvers and how to overcome complicated cases. There will be time for hands-on practice. Issues around VBAC and home birth breech, MRIs, IUGR babies, macrosomia, postdates, nuchal cord concerns, the incomplete and footling breech, electronic fetal monitoring, and symphysiotomy will be covered. The European, Australian, and Canadian practice techniques and how midwives and physicians might work together to bring this issue back will be the theme throughout the presentation.
Presentations: 5  |  Hours / CE Credits: 5  |  Viewing Time: 5 Weeks
Hours / CE Credits: 1 (details)  |  Categories: Midwifery