Midwifery Education and Certification
Statement of Policy
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (the College) is the representative organization of physicians who are qualified specialists in providing health services to women. The College is committed to facilitating access to women’s health care that is both safe and high quality. One method of attaining this goal is to assure that providers of care meet educational and professional standards of a certification process. The College has long recognized the educational and professional standards currently used by the American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB)* to evaluate and certify midwives. The College now also recognizes and accepts the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM)** Global Standards as the common worldwide education, licensure, regulatory and practice standards for midwifery and expresses support for ACNM’s endorsement of the ICM standards. ACOG supports the development of legislation and regulations that utilize the ICM educational standards as the baseline for midwifery education and training here in the United States and the rest of the world.
The College supports women having a choice in determining their providers of care. The College specifically supports the provision of care by midwives who are certified by AMCB (or its predecessor organizations) or whose education and licensure meet the ICM Global Standards. The College does not support provision of care by midwives who do not meet these standards.
* The American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB), formerly known as the ACNM Certification Council (ACC), was incorporated in 1991. The AMCB develops and administers the national certification examination for Certified Nurse-Midwives (CNMs) and Certified Midwives (CMs). CNMs are registered nurses who have graduated from a midwifery education program accredited by the Accreditation Commission on Midwifery Education (ACME) and have passed a national certification examination administered by AMCB. Certified midwives also have graduated from a midwifery education program accredited by the Accreditation Commission on Midwifery Education, have successfully completed the same requirements, have passed the same AMCB national certification examination as certified nurse-midwives and adhere to the same professional standards as certified nurse-midwives.
** International Confederation of Midwives. Essential Competencies for Basic Midwifery Practice (2010 as updated 2019). Global Standards for Midwifery Education (2010 as amended 2013). Many nations and global health organizations have endorsed the ICM standards and support bringing national health care systems and institutions in alignment with these standards.
Approved by the Board of Directors February 2006
Amended: February 2007
Reaffirmed: July 2011
Amended and Reaffirmed: July 2014
Reaffirmed: July 2017
Amended and Reaffirmed: November 2020