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Pregnant in America Trailer

Looking for The Lactivist? She's retired. But you CAN still find Jen blogging. These days, she's runs A Flexible Life. Join her for life, recipes, projects and the occasional rant.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Wow, am I the only one really interested to see how this turns out?

The synopsis from the Pregnant in America web site:

Pregnant in America examines the betrayal of humanity's greatest gift--birth--by the greed of U.S. corporations. Hospitals, insurance companies and other members of the healthcare industry have all pushed aside the best care of our infants and mothers to play the power game of raking in huge profits.

His wife pregnant, first-time filmmaker Steve Buonaugurio sets out to create a film that will expose the underside of the U.S. childbirth industry and help end its neglectful exploitation of pregnancy and birth.

Pregnant in America is the controversial story of life's greatest miracle in the hands of a nation's most powerful interests.


  1. Blogger Amanda | 6:48 AM |  

    Count me in as someone who wants to see how this turns out. I could go on and on about my birth experience in the hospital vs. my one at home. I won't do that here, but I could :)

  2. Anonymous Marica | 6:50 AM |  

    Wow, this is great that someone is going to bring birthing choices to light! I think many people trust implicitly that the doctors are doing the right thing all the time. At this time in life doctors seem to be answering to their own insurance companies, drug companies, and the under educated public. I was almost forbidden to have a VBAC, when I pressed about the issue with the true facts of VBAC the doctor told me that his insurance company is starting to not cover doctors/hospitals that perform VBACs - CRAZY! I hope this documentary shares some factual light on childbirth - we certainly are bombarded with skewed facts and "easy for the doctor" procedures.
    That's my soapbox :)

  3. Blogger Judy | 8:47 AM |  

    I had not heard about this before now. I'm definitely looking forward to seeing it. I've had three babies, steadily getting more "natural" (all 3 unmedicated, first hospital, then birth center, then home). I have become very interested in the policies and politics surrounding childbirth in this country, especially having seen how the birth experiences of friends have universally not gone the way they wanted them to.

  4. Blogger The Fluffy Ewe | 8:48 PM |  

    Now see I'm the oddball that would be scared you-know-what-less to have a baby at home. I am too worried about what could go wrong. I know one of my friends in Cali birthed #3 & 4 at home and #3 was totally unassisted.

    That being said, I do think with proper education that more women would birth at home but many women cannot either find a homebirth MW or afford one.

    Why is the c-sect rate in the US so high? Because these nutjob doctors actually make a c/s an OPTION for birth, not a last resort.

    Great video, thanks for sharing! I'll check out the site.

  5. Blogger aamom | 7:53 AM |  

    While I'm all for questioning standard medical practices, the trailer for this film--its use of background music and flag imagery--seems designed to prompt an emotional response *before* a reasoned one. I'd like to hear both sides of the issue, including interviews with women like myself who feel they received good hospital care during and after their delivery. This film doesn't promise that.

    A question regarding some of the posts above: If doctors are working entirely at the whim of insurance companies, then why do almost all of them choose hospital births for their own babies?

    I understand that medicine in America is influenced by business interests; but I also know *many* OBs who work hard to give patients the care they want and deserve. Casting them all in such a negative light is not helpful to anyone.

  6. Blogger Jennifer | 8:02 AM |  

    There are some excellent OBs out there, there's no doubt about that. I also believe that nearly ALL OBs are honestly doing what they think is in their patient's best interest.

    The problem is that OBs often fail to practice evidence based medicine. Legions of OBs are still using Cytotec to induce...tons push induction the moment mom reaches her due date. Many push inductions for "suspected big baby" in the last month of pregnancy. Many refuse to attend VBACs.

    Few have ever seen a woman labor naturally without ANY intervention.

    Most OBs honestly believe that they are riding in to "save the day" when the reality is that their standard practices often cause the "problems" that they believe are intrinsic to birth. (This is why nearly all OBs and nurses choose to birth in the hospital...because they honestly believe that death and destruction are "givens" in birth. This is not the case.)

    Obstetrics has a bad history here in the U.S. A sad history. I'd encourage you to read a historical account of Obstetrics like Lying In. We've come a long way, but there's still so much further to go.

    The U.S. has horrific infant mortality rates compared to the rest of the developed world. It's inexcusable. We've also seen a rise of the C/S rate from 10% in the 70s to 30% today with no improvement in maternal or infant outcomes.

    The system is broken. Yes there are good doctors and good hospitals, especially if you live in a progressive area of the country...but they are the exception, not the norm.

    In most areas of the U.S., women still labor and birth while being strapped to bed, pumped pull of IV fluids, denied food and water, augmented with pitocin and then being forced to push in the lithotomy position while someone shoves their knees into their ears.

    That is NOT how healthy birth should happen.

  7. Blogger sara | 8:08 AM |  

    Hi Jennifer, thanks for the book recommendation. I looked it up on Amazon, and it looks like an important, authoritative text.

    I want to clarify that I have no problem with questioning hospital births. My issue is with *how* this trailer does it. One obvious example is the very first sound we hear, ambulance sirens. Since the director's point seems to be that complications arise inside the hospital, the ambulance siren seems like an odd choice to begin with--unless, of course, the intent is to heighten viewer anxiety from the get-go. Similarly, as someone who tries to be aware of how sounds and images can be manipulated to evoke a desired viewer response (advertisements for consumer products and political candidates demonstrate this all the time), I found the background music that runs during this entire trailer to be distracting. It sounds like this film has an interesting point to make, but, personally, I feel its credibility is compromised by the way in which it presents its message: shock and *then* inform.

    Add to this the suggestion that doctors are nut jobs, and this discussion runs the risk of alienating readers who don't feel exactly as the director does.

    p.s. I apologize if this is the second response you've received from me. I tried posting last night, but I must have done it incorrectly--I'm not very computer savvy.

  8. Blogger Jennifer | 8:30 AM |  

    Sara, it's a very interesting book. I won't say it's a "good" book because it's a difficult read, but it does a great job of exploring the problems (and the good things) with Obstetrics and even does some analysis of how we might fix them.

    As for how the trailer is done...well...remember, it's a trailer. It's designed to evoke strong emotional responses so that people will go see it.

    Documentaries are rarely unbiased, I don't expect this one will be either...but they are often thought-provoking and I DO think this will accomplish that.

  9. Blogger analisa_roche | 6:27 PM |  

    Hadn't heard about this, thank you. I had an amazing OB who was completely supportive of my VBAC but I sought her ought and carefully screened her.

  10. Anonymous Maddy | 1:31 PM |  

    Ricki Lake did a fantastic documentary already on this topic called The Business of Being Born. If you have Netflix you can watch it on instant view. It totally changed the way I view pregnancy and birth.

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