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JoAnna Rorie, CNM, PhD, FACNM

Candidate for Vice President

Read JoAnna Rorie's CV here

Question: What are the top priorities for ACNM? Explain why these are the top priorities for ACNM and how you anticipate addressing them within the prospective position you are seeking with ACNM.

Answer: I believe the top priorities for ACNM are:

1. Support the affiliates toward efficient implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). ACNM has done tremendous work towards ensuring that the ACA includes equal pay for midwifery services under Medicare Part B. As ACA is implemented, there will likely be an increase in demand and visibility of midwives. In order to meet our responsibility to promote the health and well-being of women and their newborns across the life span, we must insist that midwifery be an integral part of the health care fabric. Evidence-based practice that is community-based and empowers women of all backgrounds is needed. I intend to address this need while keeping the affiliates abreast of resources as we transition to providing health care for all.

2. Diversify the midwifery work force. One overarching goal of Healthy People 2020 is “to achieve health equity, eliminate disparities and improve the health of all groups.” Diversification of the health care work force, to which I have a career-long commitment, is a key strategy to meet this goal. I plan to work with midwifery education programs to develop and implement a long-term strategic campaign toward diversifying the midwifery work force. We will need to “start young” by encouraging high school students, especially students of color, to choose their best and most efficient pathway to midwifery. Then we must support them with a national midwifery mentoring program. I plan to work with all parties to develop and implement marketing strategies that are most effective among younger populations.

3. Work to mitigate health disparities with access to midwifery care. Two specific health disparities, both of which can be mitigated with improved access to midwifery care, continue to adversely affect our women and families: the persistent infant mortality gap between women of color and white women, and the disproportionate amount of overweight and obese women and children. As a means of addressing these and other health disparities, I plan to work with the Board to provide leadership toward eliminating barriers that prevent all women from choosing midwifery care.

My interest in seeking office at this time is based on a long career in which there remains much work to do on behalf of the women and families we serve. I would consider it an honor to serve as an officer of ACNM as a powerful way to continue this work while strengthening midwifery and supporting midwives.

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