CNM/CM-attended Birth Statistics
Certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) and certified midwives (CMs) attended 320,983 births in 2013, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. (This is the most recent year for which final birth data are available.) This represents 12% of all vaginal births, or 8.2% of total US births.
CNMs/CMs Represent Majority of Midwives
CNMs/CMs have accounted for more than 90% of all midwife-attended births since 1989—the first year that CNM/CM statistics were made available. In 2013, CNMs/CMs attended 92% of midwife-attended births.
Trends in CNM/CM-attended Births
Since 1989, the percentage of CNM/CM-attended births has risen nearly every year. In 2013, CNMs/CMs attended 7.8% of all hospital births, an 8.3% increase since 2005. The percentage of out-of-hospital births attended by CNMs also increased 9.1% over this period, from 28.6% in 2005 to 31.2% in 2013. Both the number and percentage of CNM/CM-attended births in the United States slightly increased from 2012 to 2013 despite a decrease in total US births. The percentage of total US births increased from 7.9% to 8.2%, and the percentage of vaginal births rose from 11.8% to 12%.
CNMs/CMs Provide Midwifery Care in All Settings
CNMs/CMs practice wherever women give birth. In 2013, the majority of CNM/CM-attended births occurred in hospitals (94.6%), while 2.8% occurred in freestanding birth centers, and 2.6% occurred in homes.
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Martin JA, Hamilton BE, Osterman MJK, Curtin, SC, Mathews TJ. Births: Final Data for 2013. National Vital Statistics Reports; Vol 64, No 1. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2015.
Updated June 2015