Let’s work together to achieve your goals
Jen Kamel offers consulting calls for parents and professionals. Whether you want to debrief your last birth, get a list of questions answered, review your informed consent process/forms, or need a subject matter expert for your policy or legal work, Jen is here to help with a wealth of experience, perspective, and knowledge.
Legal Consulting and Expert Witness Services
Many attorneys and judges do not understand the evidence about VBAC. They are part of the larger public who hold three fundamental beliefs. First, that “once a cesarean, always a cesarean” is based on evidence. Second, that VBACs are dangerous and repeat cesareans are the safe, controlled, and responsible choice. Third, medical professionals are responsible for all outcomes – good or bad – surrounding pregnancy care. Further, physician expert witnesses often simply reiterate these misconceptions, biases, and fears which are deeply planted not only in the hearts and minds of the general public, but also among those who offer pregnancy care.
Jen’s extensive knowledge on the intersection of research, autonomy, and informed consent enables her to express to the court these complex subjects in a clear and simple manner. Her deep understanding of the medical evidence on VBAC and repeat cesarean as well as the gap between national guidelines and U.S. obstetric practice provides the court with a solid foundation on which to deliberate cases. For past cases, Jen has consulted with attorneys, compiled exhibits, and completed affidavits for the court. Are you involved in a litigation involving VBAC? Let’s talk about how Jen can support your case. Schedule a time for a zoom consultation call below.
For over ten years, Jen has successfully worked with midwifery and consumer organizations on legislation at the state-level. In this capacity, Jen has testified in front of Medical Boards, created fact sheets for legislators, developed talking points, and wrote statements for expert testimonies. Jen has helped advocates craft the perfect message to protect the scope of midwifery care and patient autonomy. Her specialty is legislation or regulations that seek to limit a midwife’s ability to attend VBAC. Are you involved in a legislative process? Let’s talk about how Jen can support you. Schedule a time for a zoom consultation call below.
“I had been nervously preparing for a Medical Board meeting. The midwifery regulations in our state were threatened by a new proposal to limit our ability to attend births within 30 miles of our collaborating physician. After consulting with Jen, we had plenty of information, good talking points and a fact sheet which contributed to the Medical Board’s appreciation of why VBAC access is important and the role Licensed Midwives play. The Medical Board passed around the fact sheet and it seemed to sway their stance. Having hard data on VBAC was critical to our credibility. We were very happy that we were left with language that leaves the option open of “refer or consult”. That means that supportive doctors can support VBAC at home. The ability for Licensed Midwives to continue to attend out-of-hospital VBAC was a major win for us!”
Consulting with Professionals
If you have questions about VBAC, scheduling a call with Jen is the best way to get solid answers. Whether you want clarification on the VBAC evidence or guidelines, wish to audit your VBAC policy, or review your informed consent process and forms, as a subject matter expert on VBAC, Jen has an encyclopedic knowledge of the evidence, ethics, and public health considerations at play. Do you want to align your practice with the evidence? Do you want to ensure you are providing the best support to VBAC families? Schedule a call with Jen and let’s talk.
“I was having a challenge finding the right talking points on patient autonomy, support of VBACs in all settings (e.g. hospital, home, birth center), and opposition to VBAC bans. I wasn’t sure how to make the most impact as the public member of the Midwifery Advisory Council (under the Medical Board of California). After consulting with Jen Kamel, I was able to refine my knowledge about VBACs and my larger talking points when speaking on behalf of California families. Our consultation gave me clarity around the meaningful work I do, and helped me find my voice as the newly appointed public member of the Midwifery Advisory Council.”
“Through my consulting call with Jen, I learned that there is good evidence to support expanding the scope of midwifery practice in my state to include VBAC.”
Consulting with Parents
Considering or planning a VBAC can feel overwhelming. If you would like to talk through your prior birth with someone who gets it or have a list of questions about VBAC that you would like answered, scheduling a call with Jen is your next step. Her deep understanding of the VBAC evidence coupled with her personal experience as a VBAC mother gives her the ability to not only truly empathize with parents but also share information with transparency and integrity. If you are a parent seeking clarity from a trusted source, schedule a Zoom consultation call with Jen.
“I was having a hard time finding the most current research on monitoring choices for VBACs. I needed the information to help me handle informed refusal with my provider (who was pushing for continuous when I asked for intermittent auscultation)- the provider also stated gestational diabetes was part of the reason I HAD to have continuous monitoring. Through my consulting call with Jen, I learned that there is no evidence supporting the *need* for continuous monitoring during a VBAC (unless induced with certain meds) and that I do have the right to refuse this, despite hospital policy. I also learned a great, respectful way to smooth things over with my provider while stating informed refusal. I consulted with the head of L&D at my hospital and it helped reassure my provider that I am well informed; it got them back on my ‘team.'”
“I was having a problem finding accurate information and statistics, which made it impossible to determine what was best for my family. Through my consulting call with Jen, I learned how to properly access the risks. I will use the information from Jen to make the best decision for my family. Jen is extremely knowledgeable and considerate.”
“I appreciated the opportunity to speak openly about the emotional and physical aspect of cesarean birth and VBAC preparation. I was feeling overwhelmed about beginning my VBAC journey; I wasn‘t sure what resources to trust. Through my consulting call with Jen, I feel confident that I have a strong foundation as well as feedback on additional steps that would benefit me. Jen not only answered my questions but pointed me toward additional resources. As a result of speaking freely and being heard by Jen, I feel supported and encouraged to take these next steps.”
“I was having a concern regarding VBAC success rates. I wasn‘t sure what to do to get more information regarding this topic. Through my consulting call with Jen, I realized that the time frame between each birth is not proven to determine success rate of VBACs. I was able to get recommendations of providers who are pro VBACs as Jen recommended.”
“I was struggling with knowing the right direction to go with my second birth. Several doctors all said I should have a c section yet I know a vaginal delivery was best. And wanted to look at all angles and make sure I was making the most informed decision based on what‘s best for me. It helped hearing Jen say there are not many studies or research out there that say those with a extension are less likely to be VBAC candidates. And that several things from induction to them breaking my water to him being posterior and me pushing on my back lead to the c section. That confirmed to me that trying things natural and having free range of movement would help give me a better chance at a successful VBAC. I know feel empowered and at peace with my decision.”