Serving Women at Birth
Susan Smart, Licensed Midwife
Education, Training, and Experience
I am a Christian midwife who has served birthing women for over 30 years. I began my service by teaching natural childbirth classes after the successful natural birth of my second child. I taught The Bradley Method for three years and was certified through the American Academy of Husband Coached Childbirth. I found that this method of childbirth instruction was effective in helping women achieve their goals of natural childbirth and being active participants in their maternity care. I served as a doula / labor support to many of the students I taught in childbirth education classes. The first birth I attended as labor support was to a VBAC mother who successfully birthed her 10 pound baby boy with no other interventions.
While studying for the Bradley Method certification, I became aware of the studies that showed the safety and effectiveness of home birth and chose to have my third child born at home with South Carolina Licensed Midwives. After Trey’s birth, I began my four year apprenticeship with two other Licensed Midwives and completed the Midwifery Education Foundation’s course on midwifery. This course, under the supervision of Vicki Penwell, is now used as the approved course for the licensing of midwives in the state of Alaska. Apprenticeship is a hands on training at prenatals, births, and postpartum care.
I was licensed by South Carolina DHEC in 1991 to attend low risk women with prenatal and delivery care. As part of SC licensure under Regulation 61-24, Licensed Midwives maintain education and accountability with 30 continuing education hours biannually, yearly peer review, quarterly reporting, and current certifications in adult and Neonatal Heart Resuscitation.
On the national level, I have successfully completed the North American Registry of Midwives certifying exam for the Certified Professional Midwife. I attend meetings of SC state midwives on a regular basis for the purposes of peer review and accountability. I have maintained membership in the Palmetto Association of Licensed Midwives (PALM). I have served as president of the South Carolina Licensed Midwives Association for two terms. I have served on the Midwifery Advisory Council to South Carolina DHEC, Division of Health Licensing, and have held the chair position for several terms.
In addition, I developed a course of education for aspiring midwives, Dar la Luz Midwifery Studies, that was been approved by SC DHEC for the educational component for the licensing candidate. I taught this course to many student midwives who successfully passed the NARM exam and licensed as midwives in SC.
For five years, I, also, served on the faculty of CAPPA (Childbirth and Postpartum Professionals Association) and taught a certifying workshop for the Labor Doula. In 2010, I became convinced that my labor doula trainings should come under the umbrella of Dar la Luz Midwifery studies so that its Christian concepts could be included in the training. I have continued teaching doula skills since then.
My midwifery services include prenatal and delivery care to low risk women at home and at the birthing center. With over 30 years experience and the heart to help women achieve their birthing dreams, I bring the ability and desire to help women birth their babies safely and effectively. families to help them navigate the birth and labor process. I look at each new birth as a unique experience and in return I provide mothers with the encouragement and motivation they need.