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Midwives law likely to end up in court

By Maria Hickey, KWMU

St. Louis, MO. – The Missouri State Medical Association will likely file a lawsuit over a new law that allows midwives to practice in the state.

The midwives provision was passed unwittingly by both the House and Senate after state Senator John Loudon slipped it into a larger health insurance bill.

Governor Matt Blunt signed the legislation into law on Friday.

Missouri State Medical Association director of governmental relations Tom Holloway calls the law vague and says he doubts it will stand up in court.

"It's just so egregiously broad that we think it's a danger to the health and welfare of the people of Missouri," Holloway said.

The medical association argues that it's unclear who could act as a midwife.

But members of the Missouri Midwives Association say only those certified by the North American Registry of Midwives would be allowed to practice.

Mary Ueland is the legislative chairwoman for the group.

"It very clearly specifies that only people who are certified in tocology, which is obstetrics or midwifery, will be allowed to practice," Ueland said. "So, I think any concerns that people might have about this opening the door for anybody, I think those concerns are unfounded."

The law takes effect August 28th.

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