Contrasts – Episode IV of the Series Birth Around the World

Next Sunday we will travel to the the extremes of the world and find out some more about the CONTRAST during child labor. On one hand we have countries with high technology and infrastructure and on the other hand we encounter with lack basic resources. U.S., Vietnam, Germany to Nepal we will see cultural diversity and public policies that lead us down to this different paths.
Birth the World!! Sunday, May 26 at 11:30pm on GNT


“Diversity serves as a means by which we can learn and evolve” Birth Around the World

You can watch online in the link
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If you haven’t had the opportunity to watch the previous episodes, we have available online a piece of each one of the episodes! Hope you like it!!!

Birth Around The World – Episode III – Revolution

Revolution, our third episode will be on tv next sunday, May 19 11:30pm (brazilian time) at GNT. We have special interviews with the doctor and researcher Michel Odent, Ina May, Janet Balaskasand and Robin Lim! Passing by Indonesia, United States, England and New Zealand we’ll visit places that are living a revolution. Let’s see inspiring realities and who is behind them.


“The importance of the revolution is to expand the opportunities available to women of how she wants to give birth to her baby” Birth Around the World

You can watch online in the link
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Parto Pelo Mundo – Birth Around The World – Episode: Transitions

The second program will be today, May 12 at 11:30pm, GNT (Brasil time).
Very special day because it is Mother’s Day and Nurse’s Day!


In the next program we will travel to countries undergoing a transition, showing Nepal, Cambodia, Japan and Australia.. In which direction is heading this change?

“The world is in constant transition, and one of the most important in our lives is BIRTH” Birth Around the World

You can watch online in the link
You have to presss the full screen mode.

Birth Around the World Series – First episode

At the Midwives Day, May 5th, premiered the first episode of Parto Pelo Mundo.


The series “Parto pelo Mundo” (Birth Around the World) presents the many facets of birth through a journey around the world.
Mayra Calvette, a nurse-midwife, and her husband, Enrico Ferrari, embarked on an adventurous journey, which lasted the period of a pregnancy, visiting 25 countries for over nine months.
This new TV series is the result of this experience. It is an intimate, unique and personal record of various societies and how birth happens around the globe.
“Parto pelo Mundo” is a new look at the world we live in by the way we’ve got into it.

You can see a piece here

Birth Around the World Series premiere May 5th

It’s with great joy and excitement that we announce the premiere of Birth Around the World Series – “Parto pelo Mundo” on May 5th at 11pm on GNT!a local TV channel from Brazil!!
Produced by Cinevideo Produções

Lake Wanaka

Childbirth, anywhere in the world, is a remarkable event that deeply transforms the lives of all involved. An experience that is both common and distinct to all human beings in each and every society.


The series “Parto pelo Mundo” (Birth Around the World) presents the many facets of birth through a journey around the world.


Mayra Calvette, a nurse-midwife, and her husband, Enrico Ferrari, embarked on an adventurous journey, which lasted the period of a pregnancy, visiting 25 countries for over nine months.


This new TV series is the result of this experience. It is an intimate, unique and personal record of various societies and how birth happens around the globe. Different points of view guided by the same concerns of a healthy, happy and safe birth for both mother and baby.


Liepzig - visita pós parto com Birke

The couple visited many dwellings and saw children being born in the middle of rice fields in Camboja, others being blessed by butter in Tibet, as well as many more being born in hospital with all the leading technology available today.



They’ve interviewed physicians, nurses, midwives, doulas, fathers and mothers. Women who have revolutionized the health system in New Zealand and those who’ve decided to live in the margins of healthcare in the United States. Furthermore, they’ve investigated the big movement that is currently happening in their home country, Brazil.

Entrevista com Birke Heinrich - Liepzig - Alemanha

Shonan Atsugi

College of Midwives

Visiting clinics, maternity homes, hospitals, villas and residences they’ve created a valuable memoir that displays the birth features of many nations. Interviews were recorded, vídeos, photos, and a travel journal were produced gathering important data of the healthcare system of each one of the country’s visited.





This quest has been intertwined with common activities of a newlywed couple who travels the world experiencing different cultures, practicing sports and viewing unforgettable places of our planet.

West Coast - New Zealand



Mayra and Enrico are now back to their homeland to share this experience. “Parto pelo Mundo” is a new look at the world we live in by the way we’ve got into it.


Join us, be inspired and part of this movement!

Together we are stronger!

The Big Tree


Cars and motorbikes everywhere, horning all the time! The taxi driver had to swerve because there was a cow in the middle of the street, lounging in the sun, in the midle of urban chaos of Kathmandu, Nepal. The cow is a sacred animal in Nepal. Kathmandu is the capital and most populous city.


We visited many temples and got to know about the culture, religion and customs. The agriculture-based economy. The main religions are Hinduism (80%) and Buddhism (10%).



Home birth assisted by traditional midwives is still very common, especially in the remote villages where the access is limited, with the total of 82% home birth in the country, in urban areas is about 50% (2006), but the conditions are not very favorable, with lack of access to hospital if necessary, lack of training and materials.

There is a great incentive for mother give birth in institutions, the care is free and the mothers receive 1000 rupi ($ 10) for the birth, but they only receive after birth. This is a way they found to increase births in hospital and achieve the Millennium Development Goal number 5 of the UN, which is three-quarters of decreasing maternal mortality by 2015. The maternal mortality rate went down from 539 (1996) to 281 (2006) per 100,000 live births (2006), neonatal mortality is 33 per 1000 live births. The c-section rate is very low, about 2.9% (2006), which shows a lack of access to hospitals. Moreover the rate in urban areas is higher, and some are elective c-section.

I went to hospital in central Kathmandu where the nurse took me for a visit at the Birth rooms, postpartum rooms and also to see the Kangaroo careroom.


I took off my shoes and put a specific one and walked into the Birth room. There were several women in labor with a companion, separated by plastic partitions. I attended two births in a period of 40 minutes. The midwives attend all deliveries. But I felt the saw a mechanic interventionist care. Then they invited me for a tea and I could talk a little more with them. They knew nothing of humanized birth, natural methods of pain relief, different positions for birth. One of the nurses even made an elective caesarean of her daughter, who is now 1 year, so I don’t need to “suffer,” she said. I spoke to them about humanized childbirth that they could adopt, that happens in developed countries and brings many benefits to mother, babies and greater satisfaction for the professional as well! They were interested with this idea.


In the middle of traffic, the cab, I interviewed the president of Midwives Society of of Nepal (Midson). It is a new organization and they are planning on courses for direct entry midwives. Another goal is to humanize birth assistance during birth which is still a very new idea in the hospitals. They also want to replace the lay midwives by professionals midwives in rural areas.

I visited the only birth center of Nepal Aadharbhut Prasuti Sewa (APS), a non-profit NGO established in July 2007. I was very well received by the local midwife, who is one of the founders, and also by a volunteer midwife from England.

They provide care to women and children, including prenatal, birth, postpartum and family planning. It is also a training center for midwives and students, because education is very limited. The major goal is the reduction of maternal and neonatal mortality in Nepal.

They told me that women do not usually get naked during labor, they just lift the skirt when the baby is born. Childbirth happens with the woman lying in bed, but are learning about humanization of childbirth. The water birth is not an option due to lack of water, but also women do not like to be naked. After a few hours the mothers go home and almost all breastfeed their babies.

There are many rituals involved during childbirth, which is the one of the most important rites of passage. Among the Newars, the ethnic group that lives in the Kathmandu valley, the mother gives birth in a dark and quiet room. After birth mother and baby are in retreat in the room for few days. The midwife, Aji, also makes prayers and invokes the protective influence of the Goddess. The placenta is called ‘bush-co-satthi’ which means friend of the baby, she is usually buried. Between four and twelve days after the birth happens a ritual where the baby is formally presented to his family and gets its name. Mothers learn to massage their babies from their mothers.


I hope that Nepal achieves the Millennium Development Goal of the United Nations, and more women have access to healthy food, clean water, and also to health facilities and c-section when they are necessary, but that humanized care can be provided and traditions are preserved, because this is the richness of each culture.


Published at Gisele’s Blog

The Happiness in the Kingdom of Bhutan

I could feel the place’s peace rigth the way. A feeling as if I had returned to the past in a time machine. A typical small airport, but the only international airport in the country. Our guide and driver welcomed us with great gentleness and tranquility. You need a guide and driver to be allowed in the country, tourism is very organized and restricted.


Bhutan is located between China to the north and west, and India to the east and south. It is a small and curious country, with a population of about 700000 inhabitants. The most important index is the Gross National Happiness (GNH). Being possible to assess the country in a sustainable and less materialistic way. The country has a constitutional monarchy, with the King very respected and popular.


We visited beautiful places, like Taktshang Monastery or Tiger’s Nest. The temple was built in the 17th century, the cave where Guru Padmasambhava, who is said to have meditated for three years, three months, three weeks, three days and three hours in the 8th century. The influence of Buddhism is evident, the culture is focused on Buddhist philosophy and the preservation of Bhutanese traditions.


On the return of Tiger’s Nest journey there were some women selling some typical products and I asked them how the babies are born there. They said, a little embarrassed to talk about it, they were born at home with the help of the grandmother or another experienced woman who has gone through the experience, they traditionally do not have midwives as profession. I asked her position and showed the kneeling position supported in front.

Home birth is still very common, the introduction of childbirth at hospitals is still very recent. There is an incentive for women to have their babies in hospital. Time was short, but I managed to visit the hospital in the capital. Even the hospital has typical construction. Birth happens in the delivery room, in gynecological position, with a typical and “modern” hospital care, with a certain coldness, as if it were a sign of modernization.


After knowing the Takin, typical animal of Bhutan, my perception was confirmed through an interview with a traditional family who lived near the takins. They chose to have their babies at home, even living near the hospital. We talked while they were still loom. The grandmother was the one who attended the births, was very important to have her mother by her side. They felt that the house was very cozy and were more hesitant to go to the hospital, on a cold and unfamiliar, strange people that often treat women badly during childbirth, as they heard. The placenta is sacred and most often buried in a special place, where it will be protected from other animals. Maternal mortality is still very high, there are still many villages in remote areas without access to the health center if necessary.


Bhutan was one of the countries that I was mostly enchanted, with their traditions still very alive, as well as the conservation of nature, culture and simplicity of life. But we feel that the modernization process is happening quickly. Young people are very attracted to the western lifestyle, television, internet, Hollywood movies, parties. It was one of the last countries to open up to internet and television in 1999, for example. One concern of the King, who warned that the misuse of television could erode Bhutanese values and traditions.


It is a challenge to achieve this balance with tradition and modernization, including childbirth, where modernization can increase safety and that the traditions are kept during this important moment that is Birth.

Birth Rate: 18.75 births/1,000 population (2012 est.)
Maternal Mortality: 180 deaths/100,000 live births (2010)
Infant Mortality: 42.17 deaths/1,000 live births (2010)
Neonatal Mortality: 33 deaths/1, 000 live births (2009)


Published at Gisele’s Blog

Gentle Birth March

Published Agust 3rd Publicado no dia 3 de agosto no Blog da Gisele , escrito por Mayra Calvette


Gentle Birth: This is the way!

Birth is often seen as a complex medical procedure, in which woman and baby are often subject to routines and procedures imposed by the hospital, which are often unnecessary and harmful.

Fortunately, more and more women are realizing about the “Obstetric Matrix ” that they are inserted into and they are doing informed choices. These choices often are not the common pattern of the society, but which are best for this woman, baby and family. Many choose for a home birth, to be cared by doulas, midwives and obstetric nurses. And unlike what most people think, those are choices that are in accordance with the current scientific research.

In July Regional Council of Medicine of Rio de Janeiro (CREMERJ) published the resolutions nº 265/2012 and 266/2012 which prohibits the involvement of obstetricians in home births and the presence of doulas and midwives in hospital births. These resolutions disregard the most current scientific evidence, the recommendations of WHO and the Ministry of Health. Furthermore, these resolutions do not respect the right of freedom of choice of women, families and from the professionals themselves.

The recommendation of the systematic review of the Cochrane Library (which includes the most current scientific research in health) is that should be offered a model of care promoted by midwives to most women and they should be encouraged to claim this option. In the evaluation of the Cochrane systematic review was concluded that hospitals should implement continuous support intrapartum, integrating doulas in maternity services, since the best maternal and neonatal outcomes are obtained when the continuous intrapartum support is offered by doulas.

I traveled through several countries, meeting different cultures and birth models that work. I realized that the most socially developed countries tend to offer a humane and woman-centered care. Pregnant women have the right to choose their companions during childbirth, are encouraged to have a doula and a birth plan; have the same room for labour, birth and post partum; are part of the of the decision process making and can deny any procedure with her and her baby; have freedom of movement and can choose the position they want have their babies.

The care during labor and birth for low-risk pregnancies is based on obstetrics nurse and midwife and they have the work in a cooperation model of care with obstetricians. Some of these countries I visited, where they are the major care during low risk pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum are: England, Germany, Holland, Austria, Sweden and New Zealand. And all of these countries have excellent rates of maternal and neonatal mortality and cesarean rates much lower than Brazil (2008 data): 24%, 27.8%, 14%, 27%, 17%, 20%, respectively. While in Brazil the rates are 52% of c-sections, 82% in the private sector, the highest rates of c-sections in the world and 25% of women experience violence in obstetric hospitals!

Fortunately the CREMERJ resolutions were suspended on July 30 until the final decision. On Sunday, August 05 will happen a March for the Humanization of Childbirth in some Brazilian cities, including Rio de Janeiro. I invite everyone to participate, I’ll be there at Ipanema beach, at 2 pm!
Let’s move forward Brazil!

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