Action Items

Welcome to Babies Remembered and Wintergreen Press
The Web Site of Sherokee Ilse
Bereaved Parent, International Speaker and Author of
Empty Arms:Coping with Miscarriage,Stillbirth, and Infant Death

and many other books, including Miscarriage: A Shattered Dream

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Action Items - In The News

Deeply discounted books available

We need to clear out our inventory of 2 titles which are
slightly damaged (front covers have marks)--
Empty Arms and
Miscarriage: A Shattered Dream

If you know of a County Hospital or clinic in a
low income area that would be able to pay a
small price for the books along with the postage
we want to send them some books.
1. Order a minimum of 25 books (normally $7/each)
for $3.00 each plus postage ($3.00 first book, .20
for each additional book). Please, these are not
for resale, but to be given to patients who have a baby
die in miscarriage, stillbirth or early infant death.
2. The maximum we will
send to any one facility is 75 books.
3. Enclose a check so we do not have to bill.
4. Send to: Wintergreen Press, Inc.
3630 Eileen Street
Maple Plain, MN 55359
5. Offer ends when books are all gone.

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--The right thing regarding fetal testing and fetal disposition.

September 2009

Dear MN Hospital/Clinic Care Providers,

I have been visiting hospitals and clinics lately to check in, share resources, and hear about any issues that might be at the forefront. One has come to the surface that I have researched. Please allow me to share what I have learned, noting that I am not an attorney and that I ask you to use this as a guide for discussion and research purposes as it impacts your policies. To be clear, this is my opinion, not a legal opinion. While I have consulted with staff at the MN Health Department, they cannot endorse a private party letter such as this. However, you may call them directly in your own research. I suggest you talk with someone in the Mortuary Science Division, 651-201-3829.

The issue appears to be the following –

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--If you Have a Miscarriage, Know Your Legal and Parental Rights


Jean and Mike Morrissey and Cecilia McGregor are parents who were told they could not have the remains of their babies after they miscarried early in pregnancy. All three fought to take their baby home to bury, were denied that right and now are fighting to change the system in their hospitals and in their entire state. Read more at:

Each year thousands of families experience miscarriages. How each one is treated in that facility is of lifelong impact. Over the years, and especially recently, it has come to light that parents are not being treated appropriately - this clearly is their baby and they have the legal rights to see, hold, name, authorize testing/autopsy, and take the body (even after a D & C) to bury or cremate - or they can choose not to do any of these things. The parents are the executors of the body and the ultimate authority; the hospital is merely the custodian. They must ask for direction from the parents about what should be done, then they carry out the directions of the family/executors.

Yet, this doesn't always happen in today's hospitals and clinics. And most patients don't even know their rights. Why would this occur? In a desire to protect the families (and maybe themselves), some staff take over the decision-making or assume that treating the miscarried remains like tissue and using hospital disposition (usually incineration in the hospital furnace with other medical waste) are acceptable. For many reasons they don't tell patients exactly what will happen and/or don't feel comfortable of informing such families of their rights. Lack of training and understanding is a part of the problem. These are caring people who wouldn't purposely harm someone, but they do need to learn how to better prepare parents and to care for them during such a traumatic time.

How can you help at this time?

1. Learn more about these two visible cases where parents' rights were
violated. Find out what they did and are doing about it, including articles
in the Chicago Tribune and Time Magazine and a visit to Good Morning America. Read more at:
2. Read materials on the subject to learn more about patient/parent rights
after a miscarriage. Go to wintergreen press catalog page and the as well as for books on this subject.
3. Hold an inservice on this topic in your local community or at your
hospital. Visit the speaker's bureau at or any of
the other websites listed on our Link page if you need speakers.
4. On behalf of those parents who will have a miscarriage at your hospital,
find out the policies and if needed offer to educate them by sharing
websites, written materials and the stories of families such as the McGregors
and the Morrisseys.
5. Pray for the families who are in pain and the careproviders who need their
hearts and minds opened.

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Honor a baby, help another

Dr. Jason Collins (OB-GYN doctor from Louisiana) has been studying the cause of stillbirth for over 20 years. Recently he has concluded that umbilical cord accidents often combined with 'nice' low blood pressure, and on occasion other stressors like cord insertion issues, can result in the distress of the baby, sometimes leading to stillbirth.

As a result, he has created The Perinatal Umbilical Cord Project; a program where he loans out home monitors to pregnant patients across the country who have already had a stillbirth. In working with these mom's own doctors, Dr. Collins can monitor from a distance the baby's heartbeats, even during the night. If there is stress he calls the patient and encourages them to get to the hospital or clinic promptly. So far each mother of a previous stillborn baby who has been monitored had subsequent pregnancy issues. And thankfully, each baby born made it and was healthy; many were born around 36 weeks.

This is awesome! Keep in mind, there are no guarantees and over time, hopefully this will be studied by others and maybe become a standard of care for certain pregnancies. There are many other ongoing studies (finally!) on the potential cause(s) of stillbirth. So the good news is--there is important work being done! Now you too can do something. I've asked Dr. Collins if I may seek help to fundraise for more monitors so he can then loan them out, (no charge for his time or the monitors). He has agreed.  So if you wish to make a positive difference in the name of your baby or someone else's baby, send donations of any amount to the following. The monitors cost $4,000 each.

Thank you.

Sherokee Ilse

Send checks to:
The Pregnancy Institute
Prenatal Umbilical Cord Project Home Monitor
2250 Gause Blvd. Suite 200
Slidell, LA 70461

Phone: (985)649-0492
Fax: (985)643-2820


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The International Stillbirth Alliance needs your help

You can also help by supporting an exciting relatively new organization - the International Stillbirth Alliance who promote and help fund research in stillbirth. This is the first time in our history that stillbirth research has been targeted by an organization. At ISA's fall 2005 annual meeting, I was elected to the board of directors and also serve on the parental committee. I am honored and excited!

The International Stillbirth Alliance (ISA), a non-profit coalition of organizations founded by stillbirth parents, is dedicated to understanding the causes and prevention of stillbirth. Their web site can be found at:

The mission is to raise awareness, educate on recommended precautionary practices and facilitate research on the prevention of stillbirth. ISA serves as a centralized resource for sharing information and connecting organizations and individuals.

ISA philosophy is to unite groups around these issues and use its strengths as a whole to make a difference. They believe that having a centralized place for stillbirth issues and sharing information will accelerate progress. Together groups can provide the public with accurate and validated information about stillbirth.

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Bereaved mothers-

please consider participating in this study that will "explore the experience and meaning of living with and transforming loss for mothers whose babies were born still. In doing so, mothers experiences will be acknowledged and hopefully a better awareness and understanding of the experiences of loss will result. This research will provide women from diverse backgrounds the opportunity to share their stories of how they live with the loss and love of their stillborn babies. Their stories may be a vehicle to help other women cope with their unique experiences and foster recommendations for improving health and bereavement care to women. It is also hoped that the unnecessary suffering that can come with a lack of understanding will be diminished. The arts will be used as a way to translate the findings of this study. Please go to the following website if you wish to participate and learn more about our study."
The researchers are careproviders: Christine Jonas-Simpson RN; PhD, Eileen McMahon RN; MN, and Ann Bayly BA, DVATI, RCAT

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Exciting news for Minnesota parents!

May 13, 2005. The Missing Angels bill has passed unanimously in both the House and Senate this past week. Soon the Governor will sign it making Minnesota the 12th state to pass this law. Now parents will be able to receive a certificate of birth for their stillborn baby (over 20 weeks). Even those of us who had a baby years ago will be able to request such a certificate after August 1, 2005. Much hard work by a few moms made this happen. We did it! And we're feeling quite proud! Good luck to all of you in other states. We hope your state will be next. A special thanks to Joanne Cacciatori (MISS Foundation) and Richard Olsen (National Stillbirth Society), both of Arizona who played key roles in starting this movement and keeping it going!


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Last modified: April 12, 2012