Keynote Speaker: Dr. Amber Price, CNM, DNP and COO of TriStar Centennial Women’s Hospital
What is your Name, title and role in the birth community
My name is Amber Price. I am a Certified Nurse Midwife working in an administrative role. I am currently the Chief Operating Officer at the Children’s Hospital at Tristar Centennial, and at the Tristar Centennial Women’s Hospital in Nashville.
Why did you get into the field of birth?
I witnessed my mother’s fear of the healthcare system when she developed breast cancer. She died very young and avoided the healthcare system and treatment during her illness. At age 16 I knew I would be in a role in healthcare where I could empower women. Midwifery was a natural fit.
Currently, what topic in birth are you most fascinated by?
I am passionate about consent, respectful maternity care, and the building of hospital infrastructures that give women voice and improve outcomes. I have a strong passion for high BMI patients, who not only face extreme discrimination, but have the highest morbidity rates.
Currently, what issue in birth are you most concerned with?
The overwhelming absence of choice and respectful consented woman-centered care in healthcare, and the adverse outcomes, both psychological and physical, associated with it.
Why is having peace in birth so important?
As long as birth is in crisis and we face alarming rates of mental and physical adverse effects from birth, there is work to do. Birth is a reflection of our entire society, our culture, and our infrastructure in supporting healthy families.
What books or resources has inspired you lately?
I just finished “Nobody Told Me About That” which is a very insightful guide to postpartum recovery. I am a contributing author to the book, but until recently, had not read all of the other contributing authors’ chapters. It is an incredible and important work for families navigating birth and the postpartum period.
What sparked your interest to speak at the BirthWorks Conference this year?
I have spoken at BirthWorks before, and received such passionate, engaged, positive feedback not only about the difficult topics I tackled, abut about the interest of the people in the audience to learn more about senior leadership in the hospital. In response to that feedback, I added a workshop about change leadership in healthcare this year.
What can attendees expect to hear about while attending your session(s)?
I will give a clear overview of Respectful Maternity Care, the main barriers to peaceful birth in the hospital (where 95% of US births take place) and what work is being done to change it on a national level. The workshop will teach people specific skills to affect change leadership in healthcare.
If you were given the power to change only one aspect of birth in American culture today… what would it be?
The thing that would have the greatest immediate impact would be to eliminate coercion in obstetrics, and giving women voice and choice.
What is a funny or inspiring quote you’ve heard from one of your clients?
The best birth plan I ever received had only three short bullets:
1: When I vomit, hand me my Neti Pot.
2: Don’t talk to me during a contraction, talk to my midwife.
3: Do not ask me to hold my own legs when I push. I have big thighs and small hands and that will just piss me off.
finish this phrase: birth is…
a reflection of our culture and society, where our societal and political issues around gender equality, consent and power are highlighted in their effect on the most profound life experience a woman can have.