General Policies & Refund Policy To confirm a clinical placement, an applicant is required to send in a signed contract and the first quarter deposit three months before classes begin or on the date designated in the acceptance letter. A full refund of the first month's deposit is given if the applicant notifies the Director within 72 hours of signing the contract. If an applicant pays the deposit fee and cannot attend the month for which they applied, the applicant may defer the starting date up to one year. If an applicant does not begin the program within one year of the original starting date, the applicant must re-apply. Any money not refunded will be applied to the new start date fees. If an applicant decides not to attend, the applicant must notify the director at least 60 days before the first day of the start month to receive a refund of half of the deposit. Otherwise all fees are nonrefundable. All fees are nonrefundable once the start month for the clinical placement has begun.
Students are under no obligation to remain at the clinical placement if they find it is no longer a good fit. A two-week notice of resignation is appreciated but not required.
Staff Midwives may ask a student to leave the birth center premises at any time. Students may be asked to not return to shift at any time for good cause or per the midwives discretion.
Late Tuition Policy Students have a 10-day grace period from the due date to pay their monthly fees. If it is not paid within the grace period, the student will be removed from the clinic schedule and will not be allowed to attend their continuity of care clients. If a student has made previous arrangements with a director or administrator, this policy may be waived.
Evaluation Process Peer review and self-evaluation are an integral and ongoing part of being a midwife. Evaluation of both midwifery knowledge and clinical skills is an essential part of the Maternidad La Luz program. Clinical Progress Evaluation Components
Birth Reports: After every birth attended in whatever role, students write a birth report including a self-evaluation of their role birth. These are turned in to the Clinical Placement Director and become part of the student's permanent record. All Birth Reports must be in the student's file before each end-of-quarter evaluation.
Clinical Hours Record Book: Each student is required and responsible to keep personal documentation of their clinical experience in the forms provided by their own midwifery program or in a documentation book provided by MLL. To record appointments, students keep record of client's name, date of visit, the client's EDD, baby's DOB, and a midwife signs off the student's work during each shift. Students tally the number of prenatal appointments, initial appointments, labor checks, labor sits, hospital transports, newborn exams, and postpartum visits. For students' convenience, there are also columns to keep a record of blood draws, Paps, physical exams, breast exams, and pelvimetry. This document will become part of the student's records for every three months. At the end of every three months, a tally sheet summarizing all clinical work must be turned in to receive credit for clinical hours.
Verification of Births Attended: Students are required and responsible to keep a record of all births attended and their role at each birth—primary, double primary, assist, documenter, gofer, observer, or hospital birth—newborn exams and transports. The record of each birth must be initialed by the supervising staff midwife. This document serves as the official tally of births attended and must be turned in at the end of each quarter.
End of Phase Evaluations: Each student's progress is reviewed quarterly at staff meetings and compiled into an End-of-Quarter Evaluation that looks at where the student is compared to expected levels. Staff midwives recommend whether a student should be advanced to the next quarter or repeat. The compiled evaluation is reviewed by the student and an Academic Director during the student's end-of-quarter evaluation, and a copy of the evaluation is given to the student.
If a student interrupts their clinical placement for a significant amount of time, the student will need to attend one week of re-orientation per quarter of absence when they return. There is a fee for this reorientation and the time spent is in addition to the regular clinical placement fees.
Official Documents Certificate of Attendance: A certificate of attendance is provided to those students who attend and complete any of the NARM phases. Official Verification: Official verification of clinical tallies and births attended is available to students who attend MLL for any length of time. Official verification is available for a fee of $25 for the first one and $10 each for any subsequent verification. GRIEVANCE AND DISCIPLINARY POLICIES Complaint / Resolution Policy: The following policies were written to help students deal with complaints about the school, clinic, staff or between individuals, or in the event of dismissal. The ability to deal with a complaint in a positive manner is part of being a midwife of excellence. Students will not be discriminated against in any way for making an informal or formal complaint. The complaint will remain as confidential as possible among the people involved. Students may begin the complaint process at any of the levels described below. They are encouraged first to talk with the person involved or ask someone to help mediate. Informal Resolution: This process will preferably be used as the first step in resolving a conflict in the belief that people can solve their own problems.
If a student at Maternidad La Luz has a grievance with something to do with the functioning of the school or clinic, they should speak to a director.
If a student has a grievance with any individual at Maternidad La Luz, they should speak directly to that person and attempt to resolve the problem. If this does not satisfactorily resolve the grievance, a third party may be asked to assist via consultation or mediation.
A student with a grievance may write to a director to make them aware of a problem and the intent to resolve it without going through the formal complaint process.
Some other means for informal resolution include Birth Talks, Birth Reports, and evaluations.
Formal Written Complaint and Resolution: This process will be used if the informal resolution process was not successful in resolving a grievance or may be used as the first step in resolving a grievance. The grievant(s) will fill out and give to a director the Formal Complaint Form. The director receiving the complaint will respond within 15 days acknowledging receipt of the complaint. The director who received the complaint will convene a directors' meeting to review and act upon the complaint within 6 weeks. The complainant(s) will be informed of actions taken. If any of the parties involved are not satisfied with the directors' plan, a Resolution Committee will be convened. Resolution Committee: The Resolution Committee will be composed of the director who received the complaint, one other director, one staff, and two students, all to be elected by their peers. Family members, partners, or housemates of either complainant(s) or complained against may not serve as members of the committee. Each member of the Resolution Committee will receive a copy of the book, On Conflict and Consensus to prepare to be an effective participant and to use as a guide to govern the resolution process. This committee will review all information and documentation relating to the complaint. Both the complainant(s) and the complained against may request to speak to the Committee individually. The Resolution Committee will develop written recommendations within 6 weeks of the date of being convened. Appeal Process: If any party involved is dissatisfied with the recommendations or outcome of the Resolution Committee, they may go to the Appeals Committee. The committee will be convened to attempt to develop another plan acceptable to all parties involved. Appeals Committee: The Appeals Committee will be established by the Board on an ad hoc basis and includes the Board of Directors and a Staff Midwife to be chosen by their peers. They will review all appeals and make a final decision. Warnings: When a student problem is identified, a written warning will be given by a Director to notify them of the problem. A copy of the warning will be kept in the student's file. Probation: A student will be placed on probation when a serious problem is identified. Any discussion, suggestions for remedying the problem, and a timeframe for solution of the problem will be kept in the student's file. If the problem is not remedied within the stated timeframe and conditions established by the Director and the student met, the student may be dismissed. Grounds for Probation or Dismissal: A student may be placed on probation or asked to leave the clinical placement for the following reasons:
Failure to comply with the requirements, rules, and policies of the clinic as described in the Student Handbook.
The student's actions put a client, midwife, other student, or Maternidad La Luz in danger.
Unsatisfactory clinical progress at the end of three months as determined by the Director and/or two clinical Staff Midwives.
Unsatisfactory evaluation at the end of a quarter.
Failure to complete the assignments required to advance to the next quarter, and habitual class absences or class tardiness.
Disrupting a class, impeding, or otherwise hampering the educational process of other students in the birth center.
Failure to comply with the conditions of a warning or probation.
Failure to attend classes or clinic shifts without prior approval by the Director.
Failure of a student to pay their monthly fees by the due date.
A charge of plagiarism or cheating.
Failure of a student to pay monthly fees per MLL policies.
A felony conviction related to midwifery or failure to be rehabilitated from prior felony convictions.
Has a conviction involving a crime of moral turpitude.
Has been successfully sued for a midwifery act, fraud, or deceptive trade practice within the last 10 years.
Is currently in violation of any midwifery regulation in Texas or any other state or province.
Falsification of records.
Determination by a director that a student is conducting themself in an unprofessional manner either in a clinical situation or in any situation in which the student is representing themself as a Maternidad La Luz student.
Inability to act in the role of apprentice, as determined by the Director.
A recommendation for probation or dismissal from the Resolution Committee.
The Clinical Placement Director has the authority to dismiss a student immediately under any of the conditions described above. The student may appeal within 30 days of the date of dismissal, in which case the Resolution Committee will be convened.
During the period of appeal and after dismissal, the person shall neither participate in school activities nor represent herself as a Maternidad La Luz student, nor should they represent themself as a former student in good standing. They will surrender their school identification card to the director.
CONFIDENTIALITY AND STUDENT RECORDS Confidentiality: A midwife deals with clients' current and past medical and psychosocial history and other information of a personal nature. It is important to respect that all information about a client is of a confidential and sensitive nature. None of this information should be discussed outside of the MLL clinical setting. Caution should be maintained when speaking on the phone so that no breach of confidentiality is made. Maternidad La Luz does not permit students to make copies of client charts.
The same respect for confidentiality should apply to personal relationships at the center and in classes. The environment at Maternidad La Luz fosters open communication; students are expected to respect the privacy of peer students and staff.
The names, addresses and phone numbers of clients, students and staff are never released without permission of the individual concerned.
Records of Clinical Experience Many students need to verify their clinical experience for licensure or certification. Students are responsible for maintaining their clinical hours and numbers and documenting them in their Clinical Hour Records Book. This book contains forms to keep track of the number of prenatal and postpartum appointments the student does, as well as forms to record all births attended. A supervising Staff Midwife signs off all clinical work, births, and transports. Copies of these forms and tally sheets are kept as permanent records in the student's file.
Access to Student Records Maternidad La Luz maintains an open record policy. Student records are stored in a locked, fire resistant file cabinet in the administrator's office to prevent unauthorized access and are protected against potential fire and water damage. Students have access to their records by appointment with a director. Students are given a copy of their clinical evaluations at the end of each phase. Maternidad La Luz considers student records and information about students to be confidential and private in nature. Therefore a written release is required from a student before any information can be shared or transferred to another institution or entity in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).
Student attendance policies It is expected that students will attend all scheduled clinical shifts and classes. On occasion, events arise that require an absence or tardiness. It is the responsibility of the student to inform a director of any anticipated absence or tardiness.
Maternidad La Luz attempts to accommodate students' observance of religious practice. The birth center operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and must be adequately staffed at all times. An applicant who has religious restrictions must explain their needs during the application process to see if it is possible to work out a plan with Maternidad La Luz.
Clinic Each clinic day is important for both student learning and for the smooth running of the birth center at Maternidad La Luz. Students are expected to be present at clinic 15 minutes before the scheduled shift so that they are settled in before starting the day. Shifts begin promptly at 8:00 AM/PM, with a circle of students and staff who were on the previous shift and those coming on. Clinical staff keep attendance of students who are scheduled for the day, reporting anyone who is absent or tardy to the Clinical Placement Director.
Students are expected to work until the 8:00 AM/PM change of shift circle ends, or until their postpartum responsibilities have been met. Students in the primary birth role with a change of shift birth may hand over the postpartum responsibilities to a student on the new shift once the newborn exam, required paperwork, and clinical rounds are completed. Students in the primary role with their partial continuity of care client or their full continuity of care client must remain with the client until the client is discharged. The student may ask for a reprieve from fellow students to rest a few hours in the birth center. The staff midwife must also approve the transfer of care between students before dismissal is granted.
A student who is ill may need a day or part of a day to recuperate. This must first be cleared with a Clinical Director. Students are responsible for arranging their own substitutes for clinical shifts when possible.
Any unexcused absence may constitute review and probation or expulsion. A student who is late three times will be given a written warning. Being late a fourth time may result in probation. Being late while on probation may be grounds for suspension or expulsion.
Students are required and responsible to ensure the smooth operational function of the birth center. This includes, but is not limited, to: disinfecting between appointments, disinfecting after births, checking equipment, daily clean-up and straightening up of the birth center, laundering, throwing out trash, filing charts, and ensuring birth rooms have the necessary equipment and are well stocked.
Classes Classes are scheduled on Tuesdays. In order to have the knowledge items of NARM's Form 201a signed off, students must attend the classes. If they miss a class, they may attend when it is next scheduled, or pay a NARM-registered preceptor to do the class privately.
Emergency and Personal Leave Policy We understand that students may need to be absent temporarily from the program for an emergency or personal reasons. The Emergency and Personal Leave Policy was written for situations of family emergencies, severe illness, or personal reasons. A student who needs to take leave must fill out a Request for Leave Form and submit it to the Clinic Director for approval. Missed clinical shifts will be made up at the end of the student's program. Schedule Policy: Students are scheduled to be in the birth center for 48 hours per week during Phases 1 and 2, combining 12- and 24-hour shifts. Students who are NARM Phases 3 and 4 are scheduled for 36 hours per week as they must attend their Continuity of Care clients when not on a scheduled shift. Students may not work two 24-hour shifts in a row or do a night shift followed by a day shift.
A monthly student clinic schedule is released by the 20th of the previous month. Students may not make requests for days off; however they are allowed to switch shifts with sister students through a written request and with the permission of a Clinical Placement Director.
Missed Birth Policy: Maternidad La Luz has a policy to fairly distribute students' presence at births.
If a student decides that she cannot be primary at births for whatever reason during a shift, she will put an "X" in the next primary box on the Birth Rotation Chart. The student needs to discuss her reasons for missing the birth with a Director. If this happens repeatedly, the student may be placed on probation.
Students who are on vacation will take an "X" for each week of vacation.
OTHER STUDENT POLICIES Couch: One student is assigned on each shift to sleep on the couch downstairs in the birth center at night in order to answer the phone, open the door to laboring women and do labor checks. Dress Policy: We have found the need to establish a very specific dress protocol in order to respect the comfort level of our clientele, and to have a professional appearance. Students must keep in mind that during their 12/24-hour shift at Maternidad La Luz they may be accompanying a client to the hospital. Other health care professionals see students as representatives of the El Paso midwifery community, and in a broader sense, all midwives. We recognize and appreciate diversity of expression and understand that it may be difficult to adapt to this policy. Nonetheless, students are asked to observe the following:
Students on shift or at the birth center for on-call clients may wear their choice of scrubs that come in many colors and styles. They must be clean, neat and presentable. Scrubs will be worn both during the day and at night at MLL, when going to the hospital, and when on MLL field trips. Scrubs with a printed hospital name may not be worn at the clinic. Students should keep spare scrubs at the clinic in case they become soiled.
Closed-toed shoes must be worn at all times in the clinic and must be clean and professional looking.
Hair must be clean and neat and pulled back.
Fingernails must be clean and cut short.
Deodorant should be used, especially during warm weather.
In consideration of other people's sensitivity to odors, strong perfumes and scents are to be avoided
Undergarments should not be showing.
Our clients view staff and students as professional caregivers; therefore students should be mindful of their appearance whenever they come to the birth center, even when not on shift. If students are unsure about the appropriateness of their clothing, they may ask a Director or Staff Midwife if a student's attire is found to be inappropriate or her hygiene unacceptable for the clinic, a Director or Staff Midwife will ask the student to address the problem before attending clients.
Legal Responsibilities: Although students will be working under the direct supervision of a licensed midwife, they must be aware of the rules and regulations guiding midwives and birth centers in Texas.
Policies for student midwives involve adherence to several official documents, the most important being the Texas Birth Center Rules, Texas Midwifery Standards, and Maternidad La Luz Protocols. A copy of the Texas Midwifery Standards is located in the Protocol Book that is kept in the clinic so students may refer to it easily. All MLL protocols must be followed. During orientation, every student receives a copy of the Protocol Book that contains the Texas Midwifery Standards.
Car: All students on shift are responsible for having a car in good working condition in case they are required to accompany a transport to the hospital. MLL requires a valid driver's license, and the state of Texas requires car insurance.
Visitors: MLL welcomes students to have visitors at the birth center for a 24-hour shift. All visitors must be approved by the Director before coming to the center. Visitors may attend births only if a client agrees. Students' children are not allowed at the birth center without prior approval. Students' pets are not allowed at the birth center.
Mail: Students may receive mail and packages at the center at 1308 Magoffin Avenue. Maternidad La Luz stamps and stationery may not be used for personal mail.