Kim Riffel, associate professor of nursing at Fort Hays State University, recently earned her birth doula certification from the Doulas of North America (DONA).
According to the DONA International Web site "A birth doula is a person trained and experienced in childbirth who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the mother before, during and just after childbirth."
Certification involves training at a DONA approved conference and receiving positive evaluations from parents, nurses or nurse midwives and doctors from a minimum of three births attended by the doula.
Riffel received her training in Haverill, Mass., and has assisted with births in Hays and Philipsburg. She also teaches childbearing and nursing care of the childbearing family, elective courses in doula care and empowering women in birth in the Department of Nursing at FHSU.