MBCP Year in Popular Press


As the year comes to an end, we want to share the many publications in popular press that have highlighted MBCP in 2017.

With gratitude for those who’ve been instrumental in spreading the word about the work of MBCP!

Wishing all well in the new year!


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A study conducted by MBCP Faculty Member Larissa Duncan, PhD, the Elizabeth C. Davies Chair in Child and Family Well-Being and Associate Professor of Human Development & Family Studies and Family Medicine & Community Health at UW-Madison.

This study suggests mindfulness training carefully tailored to address fear and pain of childbirth may lead to important maternal mental health benefits, including improvements in childbirth-related appraisals and the prevention of postpartum depression symptoms. There is also some indication that Mind in Labor participants may use mindfulness coping in lieu of systemic opioid pain medication. A large-scale RCT that captures real-time pain perceptions during labor and length of labor is warranted to provide a more definitive test of these effects.

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Happy New Year!


Dear Friends of the Mindful Birthing and Parenting Foundation,

It is with immense joy that I share with you the Mindful Birthing and Parenting Foundation’s (MBPF) many activities in 2015. What an exciting and event-filled year it has been!

As the need for well-trained Mindfulness-based Childbirth and Parenting (MBCP) instructors continues to grow both nationally and internationally, much of our activities in the past year focused on training perinatal healthcare providers who want to bring the MBCP program to expectant parents in their communities. The focus on teacher training also brings benefit to MBCP researchers studying the effects of the MBCP program on expectant women and families. This year introductory professional trainings were held in California, Hong Kong, France, the UK and Australia.

In April, MBPF offered a 13-week online MBCP Teacher Training for 20 participants in 9 countries.

In June, information about the impact of the inaugural course “Mindfulness Skills for Midwifery Practice: Stress Reduction for the Nurse-Midwifery Student” was shared at the the ACNM Education Committee’s “Innovations in Midwifery Education” at the American College of Nurse-Midwives 60th Annual Convention in Washington, DC.

In November, the MBPF held its first MBCP faculty meeting online! Our esteemed faculty members are: Judy Cuneo, MD/Ob-Gyn, Larissa Duncan, PhD, Maret Dymond, PhD, Jane Gerlach, CNM, Eluned Gold, MSc, and Jen Moffitt, CNM. We look forward to working together and to the time when we will offer mentoring for new MBCP Teachers.

In collaboration with the UCSF Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, the Mindful Birthing and Parenting Foundation welcomed Drs. Ruimin Zheng and YanQing Yang to the SF Bay Area for a 5 week MBCP training and study visit. In her work as the Deputy Director of the National Center for Women’s and Children’s Health, Chinese CDC, the People’s Republic of China, Dr. Zheng’s intention is to bring the MBCP program to China as part of a multifaceted long term effort to support physiologic childbirth for the women, babies and families of China.

Looking ahead to 2016 we will continue our focus on MBCP Teacher Training, working with colleagues in the US and internationally to outline a clear teacher training pathway for full MBCP Teacher Certification. We will also continue to work with and support our research colleagues worldwide who are looking to discover and document the benefits of mindfulness practice in the perinatal period. You can find out about some of our 2016 class offerings here. Details about upcoming classes and trainings, including those in Spain and Belgium in June 2016, will be available soon.

As you may well imagine, we rely on the generosity of our friends to assist us financially with this vitally important work. Please consider making a donation to the Mindful Birthing and Parenting Foundation this year.

Wishing you and yours a safe and peaceful Holiday Season and may the New Year ahead be filled with many moments of joy and ease.


Nancy Bardacke, CNM
Founding Director, Mindful Birthing and Parenting Foundation

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The French Edition of Mindful Birthing is Released

Mindful Birthing_French copyWe are delighted to announce the French edition of Nancy Bardacke’s Mindful Birthing, published by Le Courrier du Livre: Se Préparer à la Naissance en Pleine Conscience.  Many thanks to all the translators of this edition, and to Jon Kabat-Zinn and Christophe André, for their wonderful forewords.  This edition also includes audio recordings of the MBCP practices that correspond with the lessons outlined in the book.

For more information about the MBCP Program in France, including a 6-day Introduction to MBCP Professional Training Retreat (26 March- 1 April 2015), visit http://mbcp-naissance.org or email contact@mbcp-naissance.org.

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Mindfulness-Based Treatment Approaches, 2nd Edition

The second edition of Ruth Baer’s (2014) BaerMindfulness-Based Treatment Approaches: Clinician’s Guide to Evidence Base and Applications explores the conceptual foundation, implementation, and evidence base for the best-researched mindfulness interventions.  Nancy Bardacke, CNM, MA, and Larissa Duncan, PhD,  co-author the chapter entitled “Mindfulness-Based Childbirth and Parenting: Cultivating Inner Resources for the Transition to Parenthood and Beyond.”


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University of Massachusetts MBCP Grand Rounds

umass-medical-school-logoJoin Jennifer Moffitt, BA, CNM, RN, MSN, the University of Massachusetts’ Department of Family Medicine & Community Health Perinatal Services Manager and Mindfulness-Based Childbirth and Parenting (MBCP) Teacher, for a Grand Rounds session on Tuesday, 30 September 2014 from 12:00-1:00 PM EST.

Learning Objectives:
1. Define mindfulness, and identify the evidence-based physiological and psychological benefits of present moment awareness, as related to pregnancy, labor, birth, and parenting.
2. Understand the origins of the Mindfulness Based Childbirth and Parenting (MBCP) program.
3. Experience 2 evidence-based mindfulness meditations that are taught in MBCP classes.
4. Envision the applicability of MBCP to a busy community health center/hospital practice.

CME Details
Accreditation Statement: This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essentials Areas and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education. The University of Massachusetts Medical School is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
Designation Statement: The UMMS designates this live activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA category 1 credit (s) TM. Physicians should claim only credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
Statement on Faculty Disclosure: It is the policy of the University of Massachusetts Medical School to ensure fair balance, independence, objectivity and scientific rigor in all activities. All faculty participating in CME activities sponsored by the University of Massachusetts Medical School are required to present evidence-based data, identify and reference off-label product use and disclose all relevant financial relationships with those supporting the activity or others whose products or services are discussed. Faculty disclosure will be provided in the activity materials.

Watch the Recorded Webcast Here

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Mind in Labor: Effects of mind/body training on childbirth appraisals and pain medication use during labor

An abstract for Larissa Duncan, Michael Cohn, Maria Chao, Joseph Cook, Jane Riccobono, and Nancy Bardacke’s randomized controlled trial, testing the impact of Mind in Labor (MIL) weekend intensive workshops, is now available in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine.


Results: After receiving the intervention, MIL participants showed increased childbirth self-efficacy (p=.04) and a trend towards lower pain catastrophizing compared to controls. Epidural anesthesia rates were comparable across conditions, but fewer MIL participants used systemic opioid analgesia during labor (Fisher’s exact test p=.119).  MIL participants had significantly lower depression symptoms post-course than controls; the difference grew in magnitude postpartum; (p=.04).”


Duncan, L., Cohn, M., Chao, M., Cook, J., Riccobono, J., & Bardacke, N.  (2014).  Mind in Labor: Effects of mind/body training on childbirth appraisals and pain medication use during labor.  The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 20(5), A17.

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Mindful Birthing: Training the Mind, Body, and Heart for Childbirth and Beyond receives the ACNM Best Book of the Year Award for 2014


Mindful Birthing: Training the Mind, Body, and Heart for Childbirth and Beyond by Nancy Bardacke, CNM, MA, has received the American College of Nurse-Midwives’ Best Book of the Year Award for 2014.

The Best Book of the Year Award honors work that presents midwifery in an accurate and positive manner and in doing so helps to promote the profession of midwifery. 

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Mindfulness meditation linked to epigenetic changes

A study published in  Psychoneuroendocrinology investigated the effects of a day of intensive mindfulness practice in a group of experienced meditators, compared to a group of untrained control subjects who engaged in quiet non-meditative activities. After eight hours of mindfulness practice, the meditators showed a range of genetic and molecular differences, including altered levels of gene-regulating machinery and reduced levels of pro-inflammatory genes, which in turn correlated with faster physical recovery from a stressful situation.


“To the best of our knowledge, this is the first paper that shows rapid alterations in gene expression within subjects associated with mindfulness meditation practice,” says study author Richard J. Davidson, founder of the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds and the William James and Vilas Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Read the entire press release from the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds.
Link to article in February 2014 Psychoneuroendocrinology.

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Mindfulness in maternity


The University of Oxford Mindfulness Centre in conjunction with the Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust (OUH) maternity service have an ongoing collaboration to develop the introduction and evaluation of Mindfulness-Based Childbirth and Parenting (MBCP) throughout the UK.  This innovative project involves the development of an MBCP-focused training programme and, for the first time, the delivery of MBCP to antenatal groups in the UK.

Read the July 2013 British Journal of Midwifery report.

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