September 5, 2011

MaterCare Day 4 Part 1 NFP as a Solution

Greetings in Christ! I am happy to say that I have safely returned to the States after a full day of traveling.  The last full day of the conference was an excellent one, filled with good news from multiple people.  The talks on this day offered concrete examples of solutions that were working around the world.  The morning started with several excellent talks that centered on Natural Family Planning within hospitals.   We first heard from Dr. Angel Francesco Filardo, an Italian obstetrician and gynecologist, who spoke of taking part in the first Billings Ovulation Method course in Italy in December of 1978.  This course was transformative, and Dr. Filardo found both his practice of medicine and his marriage changed for the better.  From this point, Dr. Filardo began participating in the research that would give validation to fertility awareness methods and to help establish training programs for other instructors throughout Italy.   Dr. Filardo also emphasized his ability to help many, many women throughout his career due to his knowledge of natural family planning, and felt himself to be luckier than some of his colleagues, because he had opportunities they did not have, both in clinical practice and in professional development.  Listening to Dr. Filardo speak, I was inspired by how much good he has done in his own country by taking the principles of Humanae Vitae, and putting them into clinical practice.  He offered an example of how practicing medicine in light of the Truth can bring forth a successful and fulfilling practice.
Italy was not the only country about which we heard on this day.  We had the pleasure of hearing another NFP clinic success story out of Brisbane, Australia.  Dr. Luck McLindon spoke of the establishment of the NFP clinic at Mater Mother’s Hospital and how over the past 30 years, the program has evolved from a handful of nurses and midwives providing instruction to a physician based clinic that offers fertility awareness based instruction, treatment, and research  services.   It was a blessing to hear of a concrete model in which morally sound fertility clinic could be incorporated into a hospital system.
Part of being able to offer these types of services is having the training to do so.  Dr. Eileen Reilly, a Scottish physician, gave an excellent overview becoming Creighton Model FertilityCare System provider.  She explained how there are three levels: 1) Creighton model Instructor, 2) Medical Consultant and 3) FertilityCare Practioner.  More details about these programs can be found in the Certificate Programs Brochure.
The efficacy of the Creighton Model and the use of Naprotechnology (Natural Procreative Technology) were demonstrated in the presentation given by Dr. Philip Boyle of Ireland.  Dr. Boyle made it clear in his talk that one of the greatest obstacles in treating infertility in medicine today is the approach.  Main stream medicine treats infertility, which he defined as a syndrome that is typically the consequence of multiple chronic conditions, in an acute fashion through assisted reproductive technologies.  He emphasized that a chronic disease requires a chronic treatment, rather than an acute approach.  It is this long term approach that is employed in Naprotechnology and the Creighton model when dealing with infertility.  NaPro looks at a multiple dimensions of infertility and is able to discern the root cause of the infertility in many cases through the use of hormonal, ultrasound, and surgical techniques along with other methods.  In the end a NaPro trained physician is able to create a treatment for the individual patient that is based upon the data obtained from the patient and is alterable as the patient’s condition changes.  Dr. Boyle then showed us some of the statistics from the first few years of his practice, then gave three examples of patients he had been able to help achieve pregnancy.  These three cases were printed in a European Journal and can be read about HERE.  Dr. Boyle offered some excellent resources, including the RestoreMyFertility website and information about the International Institute of Restorative Reproductive Medicine.
These talks highlighted that there is an alternative to what mainstream medicine offers for reproductive care.  The standard OB/GYN training fails to recognize that natural family planning and NaProTechnology offer a better approach to fertility and cycle issues, approaches that are both morally and scientifically sound.  More and more information is emerging that indicate that doctors employing NaProTechnology are having greater success rates for achieving pregnancy than many of the assisted reproductive technologies.  Even more so, this type of information and approach can be used at multiple levels of medicine with varying levels of cost.  As opposed to assisted reproductive technologies, which can be very expensive and limited to only a few women, NaProTechnology and related approaches can be used by women at all socioeconomic levels.  What has been discussed above is a part of the solution to bringing about a change in medicine where the moral and scientific truth of reproductive medicine is finally realized.
In the next post, I will discuss what is being done by MaterCare International to address maternal mortality.

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