In memory of Gavin Michael

notburiedtwice

Early today I received an email from the grandfather of the baby who died after Jan Tritten, Editor of Midwifery Today, and Christy Collins, CPM, the homebirth midwife caring for his mother, crowd sourced a life and death decision on Facebook. While Tritten and her Facebook friends were pondering his dire condition, Gavin died. After his death, Tritten and Collins tried to erase Gavin’s existence by deleting posts that they had written and by deleting and banning anyone who questioned them about the baby’s death.

On Friday, I received additional information about the circumstances surrounding Gavin’s death. Now Gavin’s grandfather has given me permission to share his email message below:

I want to say thank you and God Bless you for what you are doing to put the word out about what is going on with midwives and how things go deathly wrong. I am the grieving grandfather of Gavin Michael who died in Las Vegas on Feb 20 as a direct result of what Mid wife Christy M Collins didn’t do. My wife, family and I want to do anything we can to help get the word out and try to prevent this from happening to other families and to hopefully save other babies. God Bless you and please may we be in touch in the future?

Lee Grant Yeager

Thank you Mr. Yeager. I want to assure you that many people are working to be sure that Gavin is #notburiedtwice by the homebirth midwives involved in his death.

  • Captain Obvious
  • Amy Robinson

    My deepest of all sympathies for your terrible loss. I can’t tell you how much it breaks my heart to hear of these preventable tragedies happening over and over again. We almost lost our first daughter at birth, but we happened to be in the hospital under an OB’s care when everything went wrong, and because of that, she survived. It opened my eyes though to the dangers of birth. It makes me so sad to see these young mothers led into a false sense of security by these midwives, who are more worried about their “patients” loving them and having a certain birth experience, than being a professional and making sound medical decisions with the safety of mother and baby as top priority. Its time people saw American midwives (except nurse midwives) and the homebirth movement for what they are…completely unprofessional, incompetent, dangerous, and deadly.

  • Allie P

    I have not been around much so the last time I saw an update on this story the editor was claiming she was just reviewing a case study. I can’t imagine how they will respond to the family coming forward and showing that it was happening to them in real time while she played birth junkie on social media. To the family, I am so sorry for your loss and for the misguidance you received by people claiming to be healthcare professionals.

  • Jessica

    Mr. Yeager, my deepest condolences to you and your family. Gavin, his parents, and the rest of his family are in my thoughts and prayers.

  • Amy Tuteur, MD
  • Margarita

    It’s nice to see you not blaming the parents for their choice to have a homebirth. The worst thing I ever did after losing my son to a reckless hb mw was come to your blog and read all the horrible things you and your readers had to say about me. It’s a lot easier for people to support you when you are actually sympathetic. Thanks for the change.

    • anion

      Margarita, I am so very sorry for your loss. I don’t know when you lost your son or what the circumstances were, so I can’t say anything about what might have been written here, but I know that the vast majority of the people here are very compassionate and I’m sure no one meant to make your pain worse.

    • Jessica

      Margarita, I remember when you went public with your story (I live in the same city as you). I was shocked, deeply saddened by the death of your son, and really really angry at what your midwives did. As painful as it has been to speak out about what happened (especially when people say cruel or hurtful things), I am glad you have done so and have been such an advocate for your son and for other mothers seeking out of hospital births in Oregon. Your story has touched a lot of people and it certainly opened my eyes about natural childbirth and giving birth anywhere other than a hospital. Thank you. Know that you and your son are in my thoughts and prayers.

    • guest

      Maybe I haven’t been reading long enough, but I have seen your loss mentioned several times in the comments here. I’ve never seen anyone criticize you – just the state of Oregon and its lack of oversight, which led to those horribly untrained “midwives” being allowed to practice without a license. I thought you were brave then for coming forward. I think you are brave now. And that’s because the shots that I’ve seen fired at you from the pro-homebirth internet commenters, who are frantic to convince themselves that people who get hurt somehow did something wrong -that it could never happen to them.

    • Guest

      I’m so sorry for your loss, Margarita.

  • Mac Sherbert

    Precious baby Gavin Michael will not be forgotten by the readers of this blog. I know they will continue to fight and educate, so no other family will have to suffer the loss your family has. I’m so sorry.

  • S

    I am so sorry for your family’s loss.

  • http://thefresstyler.blogspot.com/ Hannah

    This is heartbreaking. I am so terribly sorry for your family’s loss, Mr. Yaeger. Gavin will not be forgotten.

  • Certified Hamster Midwife

    It’s probably hard to take a note of condolence seriously when it’s signed by a “hamster midwife,” but, Mr. Yeager, please know that even the people with the silliest usernames here ache for your family’s loss.

    The woman who attended Gavin’s birth presented herself as a healthcare professional, but was maybe qualified to attend the birth of a litter of pet rodents. Human children deserve accountability, and deserve better.

    Thank you for contacting Dr. Tuteur so that we have a real person’s name to attach to this story that has angered so many people.

  • Lisa Walters

    My deepest sympathies to your entire family, Mr. Yeager. I am so sorry that Gavin was torn from your lives in this deplorable manner. He is not forgotten as he joins with too many of our babies that were senselessly lost. -Miranda’s mom (9/29/12-10/27/12)

  • amazonmom

    I’m so sorry at the loss of Gavin. He will not be forgotten.

  • Monica

    Thank you Mr. Yeager for speaking out. I am so sorry for your and your family’s loss. Gavin will not be forgotten, that I promise you!

  • guest

    So sorry for your loss. Sending love to you and your family in this extremely difficult and painful time.

  • Spamamander

    Adding my condolences to Mr. Yeager and all of the family. Thank you for sharing your grandson’s name, giving him a voice. Thank you for working to make sure others need not share such grief,

  • Alexandra
    • Young CC Prof

      I read that essay as, “I don’t really understand the studies, but common sense says home birth is dumb, because things can often go unexpectedly wrong in childbirth.”

      I can respect that answer.

      • The Bofa on the Sofa

        You forgot “…but Dr Amy is meeeeeeeennnnnnnnn!!!!!!”

    • Guest

      I read that essay as dripping with guilt for not being strong enough to homebirth. Poor thing. Screaming agony and forceps delivery and still apologizing. The NCB movement is sick and it’s permeating.

  • rh1985

    I am so sorry for your family’s loss. Thank you for sharing his name with. Gavin will not be forgotten.

  • http://momofmanyfeet.wordpress.com Bambi

    Thank you so much for sharing with us. And thank you for sharing his name. If you guys need support, look no farther. Some of us have been in those shoes. My thoughts go out to you all.

  • Dr Kitty

    Mr Yeager,
    Thank you for sharing your grandson’s name.
    He was lost in the most senseless, unnecessary way.
    Your family, especially his parents, deserve those responsible to be held accountable.
    Gavin deserved better than his fate and he needs to be the last baby who dies in that way.

    I’m halfway around the world from you and Gavin’s story made me so sad and angry, even though none of it directly affects me, my practice or my patients.

    My hope is that this tragic situation can affect those who are in positions of power and influence as deeply as it affected me. Deeply enough that they will be compelled to act to ensure that it can never be repeated.
    For that to happen Gavin’s story needs to keep being told.

    My deepest condolences on your loss. I pray for your family’s comfort and strength.

    I hope you know that we will stand with you and support you if you decide to fight for accountability, but we will not blame or shame you if you cannot.

  • anion

    Mr. Yeager,

    I also wanted to let you know, if you aren’t already aware, that one of the commenters here (she comments as “Safery Midwifery for Utah”) has contacted NV state Senator Debbie Smith, who has expressed an interest in this situation and agreed to discuss it with her fellow legislators. Several of us (myself included) have also emailed Senator Smith in support of this action.

    If you or any members of your family feel up to doing so (and it is of course completely understandable that you may not; please do not feel pressured into doing anything you’re not ready for), I urge you to contact her as well. debbie.smith@sen.state.nv.us is her email.

  • Hmm hmm

    Dear Mr Yeager,
    I am heartbroken for your loss. May your family take small solace in knowing that Gavin’s legacy reaches so far, and has touched so many. Our thoughts and strength to you.

  • schnitzelbank

    Dear Mr. Yeager, My sincerest condolences on your loss. Sending you much peace and support.

  • Playing Possum

    I’m really sorry this happened to you and your family. It is so wrong.

  • anne

    My deepest condolences and prayers for your family, Mr. Yeager, and your baby grandson Gavin Michael.

  • http://www.antigonos.blogspot.com/ Antigonos CNM

    May you all be strong and find healing. I am so glad you wrote to Dr. Amy.

  • peanutmama

    i am so very very sorry for your family’s loss, Mr. Yeager. so very sorry.

  • Arwen

    Mr. Yeager, I’m still at the point of feeling physically ill at the thought of what your family has gone through. I cannot get past it. I just can’t fathom it. I can’t even cry, it’s all too shocking. All I can say is I join all the rest of the folks here in offering my deepest condolences. And that I feel sick knowing that’s all I can do. Those words seem so hollow in comparison to what is needed–a time machine, to bring your grandson back, and a jail cell to ensure that this evil woman never destroys another life–and by extension, a whole family’s lives.

    I’m new to the community but I have seen already that the folks around here don’t tolerate the sort of rampant, unethical negligence (again with the words that can never be strong enough!) that your family experienced out of Christy Collins, CPM. I would like to add my support to everyone in not letting this baby be buried twice.

    Gavin’s law is clearly needed. It sounds like the minimum requirements for midwives should be education (CNM), license, insurance, and hospital privileges with actual OB backup. But everyone here, please feel free to correct me if I’m wrong.

    • guestguest

      Dr Amos Grunebaum was one of the people who followed the original thread and commented on Jan Tritten’s facebook page. His comments have been deleted but the testimony of such a high profile medical professional who witnessed himself what happened over the internet would not be ignored in a court of law. Please contact him because his opinion cannot be discarded so easily.

      Jan Tritten and Christy M. Collins will have a tough time explaining to judge and jury why they think that one of the leading scholars on the subject of safety of homebirth and dangers of lay CPM midwives who comments under his full name is to them just another “Internet Troll”.

  • Montserrat Blanco

    Mr Yeager, I am really sorry for your loss.

  • gtrslingrmama

    God Bless you and your family. Saying prayers for you all and hope that God sends his angels to comfort you. Rest in peace Gavin Michael. May you know that you will never be forgotten.

  • Stacy21629

    Mr. Yeager, thank you for being brave and speaking up for your grandson.

  • slandy09

    His birthday is very close to my daughter’s, so he will always be in my thoughts, and I will hold my little girl closer.

  • realitycheque

    My sincerest condolences to you, Mr. Yeager, Gavin Michael’s parents and the rest of your family. Gavin’s tragic loss has touched so many of us, and my heart aches for you. I am so sorry for the loss of your precious grandson, your family and Gavin Michael are in my thoughts.

  • Lynn

    My heart has broken for the loss of your grandson. I am so sorry.

  • DaisyGrrl

    Mr. Yeager,

    I am so very sorry for your loss. I cannot imagine the pain you and your family are going through, but you are all in my thoughts and prayers. Thank you for sharing Gavin Michael’s name with us. You have our support, and I hope that as time passes, you come to find a measure of peace. We all want Gavin to be remembered and to ensure that no other family endures the pain of losing a dearly beloved child before they have a chance to meet him.

  • SouthernGal

    I am so, so sorry for your family’s loss, Mr. Yeager. You’ve all been in my prayers every night since I first heard of this story.

  • Burgundy

    Mr. Yeager, my heart breaks for you and your family. No words can express the sorral and the anger that I feel upon learning about Gavin. I am so sorry.

  • GuestE

    Mr. Yeager — Our hearts are broken for you. I am horrified by what happened to Gavin and will help in any way I can. I hope knowing we are all with you brings you some tiny measure of peace.

  • Amy Tuteur, MD
    • theNormalDistribution

      Wow.

      • thepragmatist

        Wow is right. I have read Barb’s whole blog at a time, and while I appreciate this sort of commentary, I think she could’ve been a lot more outraged. Then again, she walks the same line I know very well. Still, that commentary showed the sickening side of midwifery very well: “Think about this in a courtroom? Do you want to proceed?” and “The parents are going to Dr. Amy…” Because, as you know, it’s all about self-interest for lay midwifery and only appealing to them on that level will really get through to them. It just proves to me that midwives do not really care about the patients. I don’t mind Barb but the fact that that post had to be written at all leaves me gobsmacked.

    • Trulyunbelievable2020

      Good for Barb! I don’t always agree with her, but she’s a welcome voice for sanity in a largely insane movement.

    • Captain Obvious

      I wonder what the play book, From Calling to the Courtroom would have the midwife do in this instance? Not that it would be right, just curious.

    • Danielle

      That is a very sane and very needed response. I applaud Barb for pointing out the “take away” lessons that midwives must take away from these situations.

  • MLE

    Mr. Yeager, I admire your courage to come forward during this devastating time. We are all so sorry for the pain you are experiencing. Your family and Gavin are in our hearts.

  • Zornorph

    Somehow just knowing his name makes the tragedy that much worse. I teared up when I read Mr. Yeager’s letter and I don’t usually do that.

  • YogaMathMelon

    I am so very sorry for your family’s loss. My thoughts are with you.

  • prolifefeminist

    Mr. Yeager, I am so terribly sorry for the loss of your sweet baby grandson. There are simply no words that convey the sorrow I feel for you and your family; please know that many around the world are grieving with you. God bless you for speaking out so that other babies lives will be spared. Little Gavin has already touched many hearts and changed minds about the wisdom of using a home birth midwife. He will not be forgotten. Please extend my sympathies to his parents and make sure they know that this was not their fault – they were lied to. We know they only wanted the best for their sweet baby Gavin.

  • Dawn

    Mr. Yeager,

    I am so sorry for the loss of Gavin. What a lovely name his parents chose for him! I’m sure he was a lovely baby, as well. I am praying for your family during this difficult time. May God give comfort and peace to you and your family.

  • Ra

    Mr. Yeager: I am so sorry for the loss of your grandson. I have been praying for comfort to be with your family ever since i heard of Gavin’s passing. I really have no words for the awful circumstances surrounding his birth. I am so sorry. My heart grieves with you.

  • CanDoc

    Deepest and most heartfelt condolences to the Yeager family. Thinking of you.

  • elamment

    I am so sorry for your family’s loss.

  • Medwife

    I can hardly imagine the scope of you and your family’s pain, mr Yeager. I have a son and I know when he hurts, I hurt. This was just senseless and terrible and I am so sorry it happened.

  • Ainsley Nicholson

    Mr Yeagar, please know that we here are not only grief – stricken by what happened to your grandson, but deeply angry at the people who lied to your family. We understand that Garvin’s mother just wanted to do what was best for him, and she was horribly mislead.

  • Meerkat

    Mr. Yeager, I am so sorry for your loss. Gavin Michael and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

  • Jocelyn

    I am so sorry for your family. I wish we could do something more.

  • Julia

    Mr, Yeager, condolences to you and your family.

  • Beth

    Mr Yeager, we are all so sorry for your loss.

  • Trixie

    What a beautiful name. We will not forget baby Gavin.

  • Vera

    I’m so sorry for your family’s pain

  • Susan

    Mr. Yeager, learning the name of Gavin Michael made me cry. My heart goes out to your family I can’t imagine how painful it must be to have not just lost your precious baby but to know it was likely preventable. I am so sorry I hope Gavin is able to save the lives of other’s by your bravery in sharing his name.

  • Mel

    Mr. Yeager,
    I am deeply sorry for your loss. You and your family are in our thoughts and prayers.

  • Wilifred

    Article on jezebel today about homebirth. Let’s flood the comments. http://jezebel.com/the-rate-of-home-births-continues-to-rise-1535977774

    • Mer

      Someone is quoting Ina May in the comments, “the cervix is a sphincter”. Someone more tactful than me please go educate them, I just splutter and start yelling “idiots, morons, what is this country coming to!”

      • http://safermidwiferyutah.wordpress.com/ Safer Midwifery Utah

        link please? I control+f for “cervix” and cannot find it

        • Mer

          Umm I’m linking illiterate, I don’t know how to link directly to comments in Kinja. But it was a comment by Astrue in reply to a comment by LaComtesse, which is at the top of the comments

      • Zornorph

        Ina May is a sphincter.

    • http://safermidwiferyutah.wordpress.com/ Safer Midwifery Utah

      I added my piece. I hope everyone else does, too!

  • Young CC Prof

    I was horrified along with many other people when I heard the terrible story of what happened to Gavin Michael, and I am determined to prevent it from happening again.

  • stenvenywrites

    Thank you for letting us know Gavin Michael’s name. My deepest condolences to you and your family.

  • Michelle

    Mr Yeager there are so many people in this community who are holding you and your family in their hearts right now as you navigate this awful experience. Wishing you healing days ahead. Thank you for your courage in speaking out.

  • Sue

    My condolences to Mr Yeager and all the family. I hope that efforts to prevent future recurrences will give you some sort of comfort in this time of tragic loss.

  • the wingless one

    Mr. Yeager, I’m so sorry for your loss and am praying for you and your family. Your grandson Gavin was a precious gift and he will not be forgotten. Thank you so much for sharing his name with us so that we can remember along with you.

  • guest

    I constantly worry that the same thing will happen to my young cousin and my niece. They’ve both decided that homebirth midwives are where it is at. I’m sorry that your family lost this baby, and I’m tremendously worried that our family is in the same line of fire.

  • Reb, former LM

    I am so sorry for your and your family’s loss and pain. So very sorry.

  • Coraline

    Mr. Yeager, I am so, so sorry for your loss, and angered at the way your grandson was treated by these midwives. Gavin will NOT be forgotten, and he will not have died in vain. You have my heartfelt sympathy and my prayers. God bless you, sir, and your grieving family.

  • Alenushka

    I m so sorry. Prayers.

  • FormerPhysicist

    Mr. Yeager, Condolences to you and your entire family.

  • Captain Obvious

    I can only dream of the legislature passing such a Gavin’s Law that would limit, restrict, or abolish the CPM in America. God bless your family.

    • Gene

      Brilliant suggestion, CO.

      • Susan

        I second that on the brilliance. Yes, Gavin’s law!….

    • auntbea

      At risk of being too pragmatic, having a real a name attached to the legal changes we propose would be politically valuable: it will provide focus and increase both media coverage and public support. I would actually suggest that we change the name of the campaign from “not buried twice”. BUT, I certainly don’t want to co-opt Gavin’s name if that is not what the family wants. Mr. Yeager, if you are out reading this, do you want us to push for “Gavin’s Law”? Or do you want us to continue without using Gavin’s name?

  • Alannah

    Mr Yeager, I am so sorry for the loss of your precious grandson. I promise you that I will do everything I can in my capacity as a health care provider to make sure that other families do not have to suffer the same.
    Thank you for telling us Gavins story. Together we can end the disgraceful, murderous scam that is lay midwifery.

  • R T

    A family devastated through multiple generations. I’m so sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine the pain of losing your grandchild and the pain of having to watch your own child go through such horrible grief. It must feel very helpless! You are in my thoughts! Gavin Michael is such a lovely name rest in peace little one!

  • Christina Maxwell

    Dear Mr. Yeager, words cannot adequately convey how very sorry I am for your family’s tragic loss. My sincerest condolences to you all. Thank you so much for your courage in coming forward and naming your grandson for us. There is a candle burning in Scotland for Gavin Michael tonight and thoughts and prayers from my family to yours.

  • bomb

    I am so sorry for your family’s loss, Mr Yeager.

  • Deena Chamlee

    I am so so sorry for your heartbreaking loss due to negligence. Will it ever end, I can only pray and continue to fight with everyone else on SOB. God bless you Mr Yeager and your entire family and particularly your precious grand baby Galvin.

  • violinwidow

    I am so very sorry, so sorry.I wish your grandson was here now, the darling of the family instead of your hearts being so empty.

  • araikwao

    Dear Mr Yeager,
    Thank you for your boldness in speaking out against the midwife who deceived you and your family and caused the death of your precious grandson. I, and all the readers of this site are horrified and deeply saddened by what happened. I wish we could change it, I wish you could be holding your sweet boy, but I know that, if nothing else, we can help make sure Gavin Michael is #notburiedtwice.

  • CognitiveDissonaceHurts

    As a wavering homebirth supporter, I have been shocked and extremely angry about what happened to your precious grandson, but today I cried for you and your family. Thank you for being a part of exposing the negligence that led to Gavin’s death. It should not have happened, and I pray that comfort will come to you and that eventually justice will be served. Eyes are being opened by this blog. Thank you for being willing to be a part of the process during such a devastating time.

  • MJ

    And to Dr Amy – thank you for galvanising us and for giving this family somewhere to turn. I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again – you have such an enormous heart.

  • MJ

    Mr Yeager, the love and support for your family stretches around the world. Down here in Australia we will not forget Gavin Michael and the people who loved him and wanted him so much.

  • Guest

    Dear Yeager family,

    I am so very deeply sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you at this tragic time. I know that all of us here will do everything we can to hold this midwife accountable for this negligent care, and work to do everything we can to ensure no family ever suffers like this again. When the time is right for you, you are welcome here to be heard and comforted with open hearts and arms.

    To Dr. Amy Tuteur….I came upon this page a couple of years ago as a young doula/aspiring CNM). I was “warned”, but I have learned so much from you and all of you who post here. You all are amazing and feel lucky to have found this community.

  • Kathryn in Australia

    I echo the sentiments below – thank you so much for sharing his name with us, Mr. Yeager. Gavin Michael – we will remember you.

  • Meredith Watson

    Mr. Yeager, I am so sorry for your loss. Be assured of the prayers of many for your family.

  • KAndrews

    My heart is breaking for your family Mr Yeager. My son was permanently injured at his birth under midwives care. I am so sorry that we have not been successful at changing laws in time to protect your family. Please contact me on facebook. It helps me thru bad days to be connected to others who understand. Again, I was so heartbroken by your grandson’s death. My heart goes out to his mother as well.

  • thepragmatist

    This is heart-breaking. You are courageous to speak out against this kind of negligence and I hope your story changes minds and laws. I also hope the killer midwife sees the inside of a jail cell for she has created a prison of grief for your family. And please tell the mother it was not her fault. I just want to reach out and hug her. What a hellish thing.

  • anion

    Mr. Yeager, thank you for communicating with us, and by doing so offering us the chance to communicate with you and your family. I am so, so sorry for your loss. I know I’m not the only one here who has cried more than once, although of course what we feel is nothing compared to what you and your family are feeling.

    …I don’t even have anything else I can say, except that you are all in my thoughts.

  • NoLongerCrunching

    Mr. Yeager, thank you for coming forward with your story. I am so sorry for the death of your grandson Gavin. We wont forget him,

  • areawomanpdx

    Oh, this made me start crying again. Mr. Yeager, I am so sorry for the loss of your grandson Gavin. Thank you for sharing his name with us. Please know that you and your family have been in the thoughts and prayers of many. I wish there was something we could have done to prevent this tragedy, but I hope that Gavin’s story will prevent others.

    • KarenJJ

      Me too, and I’m not normally much of a crier. Having a name makes it feel so more real. How dare these so-called midwives try and deny these events and deny their own culpability in these deaths. The poor family.

      Mr Yaeger, my heart goes out to your family and I hope it does bring some measure of comfort to know that those of us here are aware of this and trying to bring awareness about these self-styled “midwives”.

  • guestguest

    My condolences to your family and thank you for for finding the courage to speak out.

    I am not a person of much faith in me left but I will go to the church tomorrow and light a candle in the name of Gavin Michael.

  • LMS1953

    From my reading of the sequence of events, it appeared that there was at least one and maybe two physicians involved with contributory negligence. Have they been identified yet? Are there extenuating circumstances? I don’t want us to close ranks in defense of a negligent physician as CPMs are so wont to do in their ranks. Medical ethicist Frank A. Chervenak, MD deems providing back-up to planned home birth to be unethical professional conduct as it facilitates substandard clinical care. (AJOG, Jan 2013, Volume 208, Number 1, pp 31-38).

    • thepragmatist

      Yes, the physician(s) involved need to be named, too. And called out. If indeed she actually had “physician back-up” which is possibly just another lie.

      • Amazed

        I feel that providing back-up to a Sister in Chains is a crime in itself.

      • R T

        There is no such thing as a “physician back-up” in Nevada. The state of Nevada does not regulate or license or keep tabs of any kind on home birth. We do know the doctor who performed the csection wasn’t even informed they were already at a hospital 30 minutes away and if a doctor performed the scan I’m sure they were pushing very hard for the woman to be admitted to the hospital. There’s only so much a doctor in these situations can do. They can make a recommendation and have the woman sign an AMA if she still goes against their advice. They can’t force the women to do anything. Judging from the desperate crowd sourcing on Facebook, I’m sure there was a doctor emphatically using the “dead baby card” or the midwife wouldn’t have been asking for advice and support on Facebook. I personally watched a full term woman and her midwife reject TWO doctors recommending induction for borderline pre-e. The woman signed out AMA because she wanted “more time to think”. It was very much the same sort of situation going on here. Do you blame those doctors too? Do you blame the doctor who ended up doing here csection a few days later? What do you want the doctors to do, turn them away at the door of the hospital? Like I’ve said before my perinatologist gets recommended by ALL the midwives around here and he hates home birth!

        • Susan

          I agree that doctors should of course not close ranks. But, I also agree that the role of the doctors could be overstated by the midwives. There are some pretty awful stories of the doctors who were on ER call being the ONLY ones sued because they were the only ones insured. I would hate to see this turn out that way as it wouldn’t change anything. What we want are less lost babies in the future.

    • MrG

      I must strongly disagree with the LMS1953 statement. Dr.Chervenak said it is unethical to participate in a planned homebirth. Hospitals must be compassionate and care for patients who are transferred to the hospital:
      “There is a strict professional obligation to provide excellent medical care in all obstetric emergencies. Without hesitation, therefore, the obstetrician should provide excellent, compassionate, emergency obstetric care to all pregnant women transported from planned home birth. Obstetricians have a compassion-based obligation to be aware to and address the psychosocial harms of such transport, in an attempt to ameliorate their long-term effects.”

      • theNormalDistribution

        I think your quote is in agreement with LMS, actually. Accepting emergency transfers and “providing backup” are very different.

    • Young CC Prof

      IF there was a physician involved who knew what was going on and condoned it, yes, the physician should also be held accountable. The physician involvement might have been invented or greatly exaggerated by the midwife, however.

      • areawomanpdx

        Yes, I know several stories where the midwife claimed she had a back up physician, but when the shit hit the fan, it turned out the physician had never heard of her.

        • ersmom

          As a resident, we had a local HB midwife who would tell the clients that she had back-up (aka LIED to them). Her back-up plan was to throw them into her station wagon and drive to the hospital.

          I had one spectacular delivery with her patient my intern year. The patient sent me a thank-you note…and the CPM a blistering letter detailing her idiocy.

          There are some doozies here in flyover country…

      • Medwife

        This is a true lesson and warning for practices offering- or at least tolerating- shadow care. It’s not about the legal liability, truly (at least that’s how I feel); it’s about the ethics of knowing a patient is employing the services of a grossly incompetent “caregiver”. It’s not my call, as part of a physician owned practice, but I personally plan to take this issue head on the next time I have a patient considering or planning a home birth.

      • Amazed

        If I remember correctly, she called the physician at one hospital while they were in another. To me, that points at a doctor she felt she could rely on with her own safety because let’s be real, that’s all that matters to her lot – she wouldn’t have lost those 30 minutes just to go to a random doctor.

      • anion

        Given what a liar Christy has been repeatedly proven to be, I suspect her “physician back-up” is a doctor who agreed to accept her transfers, probably hoping it would encourage her to quit going so far off-road with her “care” and not wait so long to transfer. We know at least one OB/perinatalogist “waved the dead baby flag” in hopes of communicating the seriousness of this situation, but since Christy was so much smarter and knew so much better she urged the mother to blow that off in favor of those “professionals” who were educated enough to recommend stevia on Facebook.

        I could of course be wrong, in which case the physician should indeed be held responsible. I’d certainly like his take on the situation (it was confirmed that it’s a man, correct?)

    • LMS1953

      A couple of points: Collins, CPM has a website where she said she had back-up from 2 HB friendly doctors. Another poster said the site said she gets her services covered by several (if not most) of the major insurance companies. A requirement for that is that she have physician back-up (and the physician carries malpractice insurance).

      Finally, being an OB/GYN myself, I would like to give the OB the benefit of the doubt. I did not mean to imply that just because the OB is on-call that s/he is serving as back-up. A contractual back-up for home birth enables substandard care of an unsafe practice.

  • OBPI Mama

    Mr. Yeager, words can’t express how sad we are for your loss. Thank you for sharing this beautiful baby boy’s name with us.Gavin.

  • Florence

    I would like to extend my deepest condolences to Gavin’s family! his death was preventable and we will NOT forget!

  • Amazed

    Mr Yeager, I am very sorry for your family’s loss – one of the most senseless and terrifying losses we’ve seen around here since it fully revealed just how incompetent so many CPMs are, not only Christy Collins. I hope one day you and your family will find peace.

    We’re all working to prevent that from happening to other people – some in the USA, others in other parts of the world. It was terrible. It never should have happened. We’re doing what we can to make sure it won’t happen again.

    Before, I hesitated whether I hoped your family would come across the truth or not. I no longer hesitate. You needed to know. Everyone needs to know to protect themselves.

  • Comrade X

    Mr Yeager, I am so very sorry for your family’s terrible loss. Please know that Gavin Michael is in the hearts of many many people.

  • http://Www.awaitingjuno.blogspot.com/ Mrs. W

    I’m sorry. Your family deserved better. Your daughter deserved informed consent. Your daughter deserved adequately trained professionals to assist her as she became a mother. Your grandson deserved to have a chance at a life filled with firsts, with happiness, with potential. You got sorrow where there should only be joy. I’m sorry.

  • Rochester mama

    Thank you Dr. Amy for driving home the point that the babies lost to midwife negligence are not numbers on paper, but real, loved, dead family members.

  • Kathryn in Australia

    So very sorry for the loss of your grandson. Your family have been in the thoughts of many people, all around the world. We have been following this tragedy and have cried tears at the injustice of this family having to mourn a loss which could have been prevented.

  • wookie130

    Mr. Yeager, words cannot adequately express how deeply sorry I am for the loss of your baby grandson, Gavin Michael. Your entire family are in my thoughts and prayers. Please take care, and know that this precious child will NOT be forgotten.

  • Staceyjw

    I am so sorry for this tragedy, and the loss of a much loved child.

  • http://kumquatwriter.wordpress.com/ Kumquatwriter

    I wish we could do more. I’m so sorry for your loss, my thoughts are with your family.

  • RebeccainCanada

    God bless you all Mr. Yeager. I can’t tell you how sorry I am for the loss of your precious grandson.

  • Karen in SC

    There are no words except sorry for your loss.

  • Mer

    Mr. Yeager, I’m so sorry for you and your family’s loss.

  • AnotherGuest

    Poor family, I’m so sorry for their loss.

  • moto_librarian

    Missy Cheyney, if you’ve been lurking here, it is past time for MANA to actually do something about this and all of the other tragedies that are the hallmark of lay midwifery. Do these deaths not bother you? How do you live with yourself?

    • thepragmatist

      Indeed, Ms. Cheyney, how the hell do you live with yourself? Come out from behind your dogmatic world view and STOP CERTIFYING UNDERQUALIFIED MIDWIVES. You are doing nothing of value for women or for feminism. You bring shame to both disciplines. I hope you feel shame, somewhere inside you, for sitting on those stats for so long and for being no better than patriarchal institutions (I won’t name– do not want get OT) that hide abusers in their folds. Do you not see that you are doing exactly the same thing in pursuit of your agenda? This has become no better than a religion and you have a responsibility to women to separate fantasy from evidence-based practice. You are failing, personally, and this one is on your conscience. Like all the little bodies lined up behind it.

      We’ve seen this play out in real time before: it was only a matter of time before we saw the tape played all the way through. When will this stop?

  • veggiegal

    Also, right now, googling Christy Collins just brings up her website and an bunch of “positive” links on google. I think we need to mention her here as much as possible, to link her name to this blog, so that there will be no dissociating between her and this case ever again in the future! Anyone else more savvy knows how to “google link” this site to her name?

    • http://safermidwiferyutah.wordpress.com/ Safer Midwifery Utah

      I was thinking one of us ought to contribute quotes from christy collins’s email to My OB said WHAT? You can name the midwife in the comments or link to the article on this web site. That site is a truly excellent way to get hits and recognition, and they do take quotes from midwives as well as OBs.

      • me

        I’m pretty sure it’s against their policy to name names. Not sure about links tho.

    • WhatPaleBlueDot

      It doesn’t work the way it used to. So it’s really hard.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Search_engine_optimization

  • http://safermidwiferyutah.wordpress.com/ Safer Midwifery Utah

    Mr Yeager, if you are reading this I want you to know that I have emailed all the news stations in las vegas, and also the district attorney and the homicide department of the LVPD about this case. I urge you to contact them yourself to get Gavin’s death appropriately investigated. Since you have first hand knowledge of the case they are more likely to respond to you.

    Dr Amy please urge him to file a police report since you have his email. Someone needs to investigate this. If the cops look into it the media may be more likely to pick up the story bc they can more easily confirm details.

    • thepragmatist

      Please do and connect the mother to the other loss moms who post here, especially those who followed through with reporting. Reporting is a hard thing, but it’s the only way to stop an abusive and negligent provider. The mom may be too shell-shocked, so write down and videotape every thing you can remember NOW, in case you need it later. :( In some ways, this is so much like an assault. Now I AM crying and I am a tough one to crack these days.

      • NavelgazingMidwife

        Mr. Yeager,

        I, too, am so, so sorry for the loss of your grandson. As a grandmother, I can still barely imagine what pain you must be feeling losing your first grandbaby.

        I am also a CPM, as Christy Collins is, but I have stopped practicing for a variety of reasons, including believing I don’t have enough skills or education to practice home birth adequately. Why I am writing, though, is to offer my knowledge of how CPMs operate and the way we are trained and practice should you need someone to speak out about the way your grandson was treated. His slow and painful death haunts me (and many of us here) and I want to help in any way I can. You can connect with me through Facebook (Barbara Herrera) or my email NavelgazingMidwife@gmail.com. Please let me know if I can do anything for you or your family. I’m also glad to answer any questions you might have about our training and education. I don’t know Christy’s per se, but she was originally a California midwife (where I live), so have a pretty good idea of how she learned.

        Again, I am so sorry for your grandson’s death. Please offer my condolences to your daughter and son-in-law, too. Our hearts go out to your entire family.

    • NavelgazingMidwife

      Mr. Yeager,

      I am so, so sorry for your loss. As a grandmother, I can still barely understand the pain you must be feeling losing your first grandbaby. My heart goes out to you and your family.

      I am also a CPM and am glad to help you with any questions you might have about the training or education of CPMs. You can contact me through Facebook (Barbara Herrera) and I will help you in any way I can.

      Again, my heart goes out to you and your family. Your grandson will not be forgotten.

  • http://whatifsandfears.blogspot.com/2012/12/the-business-of-being-misled.html Doula Dani

    Mr. Yeager,

    I am so, so sorry for this heartbreaking loss for you and your family. Thank you so much for speaking out in memory of your grandson, Gavin. We will all do our best to spread the word in hopes of preventing this from happening again.

    Sincerely,
    Danielle

  • moto_librarian

    Mr. Yeager, my heart breaks for your entire family over the loss of your grandson. Please know that we will continue to fight for Gavin Michael and all of the other babies that the lay midwifery community refuses to acknowledge.

  • veggiegal

    Lee Grant Yeager – I am so deeply deeply sorry for your loss. This should never have happened!!! If your daughter (or daughter in law?) is willing to sue the midwife, I would be happy to contribute to a fund to support that lawsuit. I am sure Dr. Amy would be willing to post the fund details and how we can help here. Please do be in touch – we all hope we can make sure this doesn’t ever happen again, and that those responsible are brought to justice. Thanks for sharing and for revealing the name. It is a beautiful name, and I am sure he was a beautiful baby.

    • Ihateslugs

      Mr. Yeager, I would also gladly donate to a fund for your family to pay for any legal fees incurred in the investigation, prosecution, and hopefully, conviction of Ms. Collins, whether it be a criminal (most appropriate) or civil case. I would also recommend considering a charitable fund in sweet Gavin’s name, perhaps for a scholarship for a deserving student. Maybe even a medical student who wishes to pursue obstetrics or pediatrics or a nurse midwife student, but someone who will truly contribute honest and skilled care to women and babies? I would be honored to donate to that as well.

  • Anj Fabian

    Mr. Yeager,

    I wish to offer my condolences to you and your family. I would also like to thank you for your courage and generosity. Reckless midwives like Collins rely on the silence of others to hide the consequences of their actions and inactions.

    Sincerely,
    Anj

  • Mishimoo

    I’m so sorry about the loss of your grandson.

  • Guestll

    Thank you for your courage. I am so, so sorry for what happened to Gavin Michael. God bless you too, Mr. Yeager.