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RIP: Marsden Wagner, a Father of the Natural Childbirth Movement

This week, women and babies everywhere lost an important advocate.  Dr. Marsden Wagner, trained as a neonatologist and epidemiologist, was a single father of four, former head of Maternal and Child Health in the World Health Organization, researcher, author, activist, and more.  He dedicated his life to promoting mother-and-baby-centered childbirth care.  Read more about him (as well as Dr. David Chamberlain*) here.

On April 12th, I offered a public class on creating a birth plan and it was based on one of Dr. Wagner’s great books, Creating Your Birth Plan: The Definitive Guide to a Safe and Empowering Birth.  I recommend this book to anyone who is pregnant or trying to conceive.

photo from loe.org

photo from loe.org

Dr. Wagner was one of my personal heroes, and I view him as a father (among many mothers) of the modern natural childbirth movement.  It seems fitting that he passed away on the two year anniversary of my own father’s death, which occurred as I was awaiting the homebirth of my son.

 

*Dr. David Chamberlain, psychologist and author who was equally important in the childbirth world, also passed away this week.  You can read about him in the article linked above.

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