Saturday, January 03, 2009

FDA raids Miami birth center; Placentas, medical records confiscated

On Christmas Eve, federal, state, and local authorities executed a search warrant on the Miami Maternity Center following a 10-month joint investigation by the Florida Department of Health, the US Food and Drug Administration, and Miami Dade Police Department’s Medical Crimes Unit. Birth center staff were allegedly dehydrating and encapsulating placentas in a process that resulted in placentas from various birth mothers becoming commingled. Midwife Shari Daniels denies the allegations, according to news reports:
"They charged in here as if I were making crack cocaine," Daniels complained. "They could have sent one person and we should have shown them everything." She suggested that the raid might have been caused by angry obstetricians, who charge several times what she does to deliver a baby. "The local docs are screaming their heads off.''
Jodi Selander, owner of Placenta Benefits, a placenta encapsulation service, writes on her blog:

I am (obviously) a huge proponent of placenta encapsulation. However, I can not in any way condone this type of activity. I created the Training & Certification program specifically to avoid these types of situations.

As an advocate for the movement toward legitimizing the use of placenta for its natural purpose, this story is absolutely outrageous. People who operate with such a total lack of regard for the gravity of the process and who apparently do not realize that the FDA is not on our side, set the movement back and make it harder for the rest of us who are being safe and working toward legitimacy.

Please, people - don’t think that you can find free instructions for drying placentas on the internet and just set up shop. This is serious. You need to comply with government standards and regulations. Get some training. Work with us. Together we can do it. But not when people like this are operating out there.


White Collar Crime News blogger Jef Henninger has a lawyer's take on the situation:
I hate to see good people get caught up in criminal cases when the entire problem could have been easily avoided if a good attorney got in there and essentially performed an audit on the entire business....I don’t know enough about the facts of this case to really figure out what the situation is here, but I see no indication that anyone was harmed. At the most, it seems like they had sloppy business practices while they performed a service that the people wanted; but the FDA does not agree with. This seems like it would be a good case for a lawyer to argue that this is a technical violation of civil law and not a criminal violation as no one was actually harmed.
And, as I have mentioned before, I would love to have an expert's opinion about the HIPAA implications of confiscation of medical records. What happens to a person's right to his or her own medical records when those records become evidence? I assume that HIPAA exempts healthcare providers from liability when complying with a legitimate court order or other legal process, but do the police, prosecutors, and court personnel have the same duty as healthcare providers do to keep protected health information confidential? What if the health of a woman and her baby are compromised because her prenatal records are unavailable? Is there liability? Is anyone but me asking these questions?


Update 1/08/2008: For more information and continuing updates, please visit The Placenta Blog.

63 comments:

DoulaMomma said...

wow!
It might be interesting for the clients of this birth center to file complaints re. HIPAA...

Anonymous said...

There are placentas being ground together and fed to woman and you guys are worrying about HIPPA? The clients can request a copy of the chart from the FDA. Consuming one's placenta is a personal choice and these women may have chosen not to consume the pills if they had known it was mixed. Now the owner claims pills were never made, but clients and students alike have posted around the internet how they made and consumed them. The comments were well intentioned and claim no mixing ocurred, but with the statement made by Ms. Daniels it appears someone is lying. So is it her or the many students and clients who have posted. Are any of the persons defending her aware of the arrest of one of her "midwives" who was never licensed to practice? Or how about the inspection report realeased in Late January finding the midwife's action directly led to the death of an infant?

Andrew in Miami said...

My wife and I went to the free birthing classes there but, for various reasons, including that our baby was a butt breach, ultimately made the decision to have our baby in the hospital. Shari came in and spoke to the class, and while I don't recall her talking about placenta pills, I clearly remember the class's instructor talking about how the pills they made were such a great thing, helped people so much, etc.

Look, I have a lot of sympathy for Shari and MMC - I really think they provide a great service, and certainly are ultra-dedicated to their clients. On the other hand, Shari is a zealot, and her statement about how area OBGYN's are out to get here certainly makes her seem paranoid. MMC and natural birthing may be perfect for some, and lord knows we need affordable healthcare services - but keep an open mind!

Suvine said...

Birthing centers are so much better than hospitals for giving birth.

Anonymous said...

I agree 100% that Birth Center and home births are SAFER because of the low rate of intervention, and because unlike hospitals there are no real sick people leaving their germs and infections around. However that theory goes out the window when there are organs being processed and fed the clients. If this is the case THIS birth center is not a good place to have a baby. There are a few other centers in South Florida. I would love to hear their take on this,

Willy said...

You can decide that someone is a bad midwife or a bad birth center and not think that about midwives and birth centers as a whole. The argument that if one bad midwife is stopped that it is bad for all midwives is silly. On the contrary, if the rules are broken and a midwife is caught doing so it is a good thing she is stopped so that it shows that midwives are a regulated profession. There are bad practitioners of every profession.

Waterbaby Lady said...

In one post they say the make the pills carefully. In another they say they don't make pills. If the are lying they are going to get caught, and then no matter how inoccent they are they will forever be viewed as being untruthful.

Anonymous said...

As a former MMC student I know that the placenta pills were made at the center. Finally now all the mothers that delievered there will know Shari is a lyer. I hope that each client that ingested the tainted pills contact the hotline number to report the pills being made. 1-877-HALT-ULA I also hope that these mothers are tested for all blood borne diseases that may have entered there system through the placenta pills. If you are truly a advocate for moms and babies you will relize that Shari's unethical and unsafe practices give all midwives a bad name.

Ali said...

If you have information, I would hope you would contact the investigators.

The Mommy Blawger said...

DoulaMomma - that's what I'd do! Just for kicks, huh?

Anon 4:51 - While feeding someone another person's placenta is definitely a huge no-no, I'm not worried about the health implications because, although I'm certainly no expert, I doubt that many pathogens could survive being dried and then digested.

"The clients can request a copy of the chart from the FDA." - do you know this for sure? For that matter, how would a patient know that her file had been confiscated in the first place, much less which of the 3 agencies involved had custody of it, and how and from whom to request a copy?

Waterbaby Lady - while I agree with your logic, the statements you refer to are taken from an article written by reporters, who are NOTORIOUS for misquoting people, as anyone who deals with the media can tell you. I will not try and convict anyone (or defend them, either) based on a news article, and the only thing that we can be sure of is that we do not have the full story.

Anonymous said...

Mommy Blogger: I have it under good authority that the way they handled the manufacture (if want to call it that) definitely allowed for cross contamination.

Think it through. Imagine the most disgusting and haphazard way to make placenta pills with multiple contributors, and you will be close.

Waterbaby Lady said...

The statements confirming the making of these pills where all made on the set by bloggers who were I guess trying to help and defend the midwife and birth center. My point was that it seems that while trying to help, they may be hurting her more.

Anonymous said...

I attempted to get my chart for a new provider today. I was leaving before all this came down for other reasons. I contacted the state and they did direct me to the Ft Lauderdale branch of the FDA. Any other patients leaving the center need to do the same.

la Negra de Casa Carmi said...

The blogs, the news and the community is in a complete uproar over these allegations but no one moved a finger to type a defense or concern when my nephew lost his life there in October. This isn’t a comment based on malice at all. I’m a faith driven person and firmly believe that consequences are on their way.

However I can not believe that all the fellow midwives, students and mothers that have had an experience with the MMC all have their comments NOW but no one cared enough to comment or ask why- when my sisters birth went terribly wrong at the hands of Shari Daniels, its clear to me that she does not follow the regulations that are set fourth by our government to practice midwifery and if she is not following those laws in regards to how she delivers a birth then do you really think she gives a damn about following any regulations concerning manufacturing of placenta pills?

Its public record now, the AHCA has already determined that on 4 allegations against her on the day of my nephew’s birth she failed to follow the regulations directly resulting in his death. Come on people, look it up.

I know first hand she offered those pills to our family! So what?

What are we fellow bloggers, mothers, community leaders, friends, family members and midwives going to do about it?

Enough is enough; this lady is not fit to practice midwifery where there aren’t any eyes to watch over her every move on a daily basis and even if there were I don’t believe that would be enough.

She makes erratic life threatening decisions. She falsifies patient charts and labor records and she does use equipment to extract births that are not even legal.


I'm utterly sick to my stomach with all of this already!

midwife said...

la Negra de Casa Carmi
Please be clear that many of us know the placenta pills are only the tip of the iceberg and the best way to get their foot in the door.
There are few, or possible no midwives in the community that are defending Ms. Daniels. The support you are seeing on the blogs are the statements of her current students and a few radical Shari die hards. Shari removed herself from the community long ago. She probably thought she was too good for us.

la Negra de Casa Carmi said...

midwife said... 2:30

apparently she's better than God as well...

Anonymous said...

la Negra de Casa Carmi,

Shari manipulated many of her students and and trained a good number of Midwives throughout Florida. She has a high paid aggressive lawyer that, I assume is pretty good at putting out fires.

Sheri is well known and is now a celebrity from her series House of Babies. I know of a handful of complaints to many state and Federal agencies and their investigations. Many seemed to stop cold because of the seemingly non-importance of regulating midwifery.

Shari had a huge business going at MMC and was willing to do whatever it took to keep it going.

I want to point out that she also runs a state accredited school at that site all the while. Imagine the power the master has over her students. And she exorcised that power in the most insidious of ways.

Anonymous said...

la Negra de Casa Carmi,

I also want to add, that complainants have been working the system for a long time, hoping that it will go somewhere. It finally is.

You will see much about this in the future, I'm sure.

Anonymous said...

I think you guys are giving Shari a lot of credit! Aparently you think she's stronger than God! I've never heard her say it but to think that Shari has brain washed and fooled all her clients, students and hundreds of midwives into standing up for her! That is some power but sounds like it's coming from you guys! Did it occur to anyone that people are standing up for her becuase it is right! I'm sorry you lost your nephew but death happens! Instead of greaving correct you're refocusing your anger! Who is the real victim you or your nephew because I'm sure he's been laid to rest but your giving all kinds of life to your hatred of onw person! If you are indead a woman of faith you know that God is ultimately in control!

Waterbaby Lady said...

Anonymous 3:34
As to the previous post...

You distgust me. DO NOT TELL SOMEONE HOW TO GRIEVE. I am sure that La Negra de Casa Cami has her reasons for feeling what she feels. I hope you never have to go through what she is going through.

Anonymous said...

Hummm... it appears this is not Ms Daniels first run in with the law.

The subject of the FDA raid Miami Maternity Center is owned by a woman (Shari DAniels) who has already faced similar charges in another country. Please see link for coverage of last birth center closed:http://www.jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20010526/lead/lead2.htmlhttp://www.jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20010529/lead/lead6.html

Anonymous said...

Sorry about the links:

http://www.jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20010526/lead/lead2.html

http://www.jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20010529/lead/lead6.html

complaintant #2 said...

ok, I have been quietly taking this all in....Now let me describe to you how placenta pills are made at the mmc. Stay close to your bathroom in case you feel sickl

First the placenta is examined and the cord is measured and blood loss is also measured then medallions of placenta meat are cut or just chunked out with our fingers. (Keep in mind that the placenta is delivered into a pan along with any blood, mucus, baby poop and sometimes even mom's poop all mixed up together.) These 3 to 5 pieces of placenta are arranged on the tray and placed into the dehydrator. Two or three mother's placentas can be drying at the same time on one tray. Sometimes there were multiple trays in the dehydrator. Sections of placenta medallions were labeled by a peice of tape with the mothers name on it stuck to the outside of the tray. (Usually, just to save time, I took that peice of tape and used it to label the ziplock baggie that I put the finished placenta pills in.) The rest of the placenta was put into a red bio bag and put into the freezer. After a couple of days of dehydrating, we then placed the 3 to 5 peices of dried placenta in a coffee grinder until ground fairly fine. Finally we would scoop placenta grounds into capsules. A student finally bought a device where you could fill numberous capsules at the same time. What a time saver!!! HOWEVER, none of these machines and devices were ever sanitized and rarely washed. You may identify with the 'blow away the crumbs' or the 'dust the crumbs into the trash' method. That is what we practiced at mmc. Once, early in my time at mmc, I was earnestly washing and trying my best to sanitize the dehydrator and grinder. Shari found me doing so and scolded me saying that it was unnecesary and took to long and that I should be in clinic. Finally, the finished placenta pills were put into a baggie and placed or stapled into the mothers file to be given to her when she came back to the clinic or at her home visit.

Additionally, I want to make it clear that I have no problem with women making choices for themselves and the way they dispose of their placentas or even if they choose to ingest their placentas. I do, however, completely disagree with the way placenta pills are processed at MMC. It is disrespectrul and unethical to process placentas in the way we were taught. Some of the clients at MMC have strong ideas about health and cleanliness. Some have strong religious views. The MMC way of processing placentas is definately NOT kosher or healthy or clean. Shari violates women when she presentes them with contaminated placenta pills. I am truely sorry that I participated in these activities while I was at MMC and I give my sincerest appologies to any and all moms that will be affected by this information. The only way to start to make it right is to cooperate in the discovery process and bring to light what truely is happening at this birth center.

And, yes, La Negra de Case Carmi, Shari's disregard for the proper processing of placentas is a reflection of how she views the laws and protocols of her profession. So much will be brought to light in the near future. In the words of Shari: "Carma is a Bitch!" How she is going to have those words resounding in her mind soon!

Carla Barrios said...

I gave birth at MMC in 2006. I was offered the pills, I took them, so far I've been healthy, my baby is healthy; the MMC is great at empowering women to embrace labor the way Nature intended it for us, encouraging women to be strong and brave, and ultimately to have a safe delivery and a healthy baby.
I do believe this matter needs a lot of investigation, and all of us deserve to know the truth, the facts, the consequences and the proactive solution.

la Negra de Casa Carmi said...

First of all... for your information since you need some. My nephew died at the MMC because of direct negligence at the hands of Shari and since you were not there... or you probably were and that's why you’re so hopped up on this. I feel the need to school you a little bit. So sit back relax and enjoy the read! Secondly, according to the AHCA and that is just the tip of the iceberg, Shari failed my family 4 times over.. directly resulting in my nephews death. Go and read it, its public record. I can't get into too many details right now but rest assured she did break the law a number of times and did not follow procedure and its not just a case of "death happens" its freaking malpractice!! Kindly MAKE some sense! I have nothing to hide but apparently you do by remaining anonymous so let’s leave it to that. You seem cowardly and you seem like one of "those" I'm praying you’re not a midwife as well. Because man oh man that brings a scary thought.

Do not place a judgment on me I am not vengeful and I’m past initial grieving I am thinking soooo clearly, it’s not even funny... And for people that are protecting Shari because they think its right. The truth will set them and everyone else that has doubts straight. BELIEVE that. TRUST in that. AND GOD does in deed take care of all WRONG DOERS!

Don’t ever dare to tell me or anyone else in my family how to react to this matter; it’s so easy on the outside looking in isn’t it? Close-minded individuals make me sick to my stomach. HAD my sisters caretaker at the time used the guidelines set fourth by the government my precious nephew would be here today and this blog would be null. However, that didn't happen. I'll speak my mind and you can speak yours... clearly yours is half empty!

FACTS DONT LIE! YEAH, DEATH HAPPENS, BUT SO DOES MALPRACTICE, HATE AND IGNORANCE. AND YOU’RE COMMENTS MY ANONYMOUS FRIEND PROVE THIS POINT.

GOD BLESS YOU!

The Mommy Blawger said...

Ladies, let's take it down a notch. If it's personal, please take it elsewhere. I don't want to delete relevant comments, but I must insist that the tone on my blog remain civil.

Waterbaby Lady said...

I have tried to pose the question to Jodi of PBI about her certification being recognized by the FDA or any others. She said for obviouse reasons she could not answer that. So here is my 2 cents.
Even the hot dog cart at my local beach has to be inspected and regulated. Does it not then make sense that someone manufacturing supplements made from Human organs would have to do the same. Through regulation situations like thse would be avoided. At least there would be a protocol in place and if broken, wham you're closed for business. If a woman choses to do this for herself, great. FDA does not inspect my kitchen. But if you plan to make money off of doing it for someone, or if you have a place where many placentas will pass through for cooking it sure as hell should be regulated.

waterbaby lady said...

This link leads you to the story of when Shari Daniels was caught hiding charts of patients who died in her center in Jamaica. She then left the country before prosocution.
http://www.jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20010602/lead/lead2.html

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The Mommy Blawger said...

That last anon comment was over the line. Sorry! Try again.

AnneMarie said...

If you are at all interested in Shari Daniels please check this site out. www.miamibirth.info designed to bring the truth to light re: Miami Maternity Center.

Anonymous said...

Students of Shari, how do you feel about Shari leaving Florida? What does that tell you? She is willing to abandon her clients and students and her grandson. Over what? Placenta Pills? Or are the walls closing in on her because of her own actions?

Anonymous said...

Complaintant #2-Please contact me to discuss your knowledge about the MMC's process of producing placenta pills.

Thanks,
Speical Agent Kriplean
US Food and Drug Administration
Office of Criminal Investigations
Miami Field Office
(954) 476-5400

complaintant #2 said...

I will gladly contact you!!!!!

nashvillemidwife said...

Regarding HIPAA: Complying with law enforcement officials is a valid and legal way in which personal medical information may be used. Those lengthy privacy policies that you likely don't read when they give it to you at the doctor's office says as much.

past MMC patient said...

I gave birth at MMC in 2008 and had a completely different experience- I had an amazing experience.

However, reading the comment from Complaintant #2 truely disturbs me. You tell about how disgusting the process was to make the placenta pills. Yet you never alerted any authority to the procedure that was not clean or kosher? You just continued along? And now you give a little apology online and suggest Karma to correct the situation.

If you were a student or an employee and turned a blind eye to unsafe practices, then don't blast MMC online. You owed it to us as patients to alert the proper authority. I would question your own dedication to midwifery if this indeed happened as you describe and you stood by and watched this happen. Shame on you.

The Mommy Blawger said...

Nashvillemidwife - I assumed as much, but I wonder what happens to the confidential nature of that personal information once it is turned over to law enforcement or investigators, since they are not a covered entity under HIPAA.

complaintant #2 said...

Dear past MMC patient,
By the nature of my username, Complaintant #2, you may be able to discern that I have alerted the proper authorities. However, the 'powers that be' are inundated with many cases and paperwork and red tape. FYI, there are many investigations from many agencies that are active at this point in time. Some of the investigations have been ongoing for over two years. Actually, Shari owed/owes it to her clients to inform them of any misconduct or disciplinarian actions that has happened at her center. Instead, she has hired a lawyer to help get her out of the trouble she has gotten herself into. She is also using her lawyer to silence those who are trying to speak out and stand up against her practices. Additionally, it was my dedication to midwifery and patients rights that lead me to speak to authorities. Since you do not know me, you do not know the HUGE sacrifice I made when I did speak up and choose not to turn a blind eye. Keep your ears, eyes and minds open because soon there will be more information made public about Shari's unethical/illegal practices.
So, past MMC patient, you are mistaken on every point...I DID alert authorities....I did NOT just continue along and turn a blind eye...My apology was from my heart....I am not blasting MMC, it is just the appropriate time to be able to speak in a public setting....I AM totally dedicated to patients rights and safe midwifery...SHAME ON SHARI for hiding her situation from you and others and for practicing as if she is above the law.
One other thing, I am so delighted that you had a wonderful birth experience at MMC. I do not want to take anything away from your incredible birth memories. I know that incredible births can happen at MMC, I always took great pride in helping a mother have an empowering and memorable birth. It is a passion I have, even to this day. Most births I attended were wonderful. However, there were many instances of illegal, unethical and unsafe procedures and practices. I am glad that you were not touched by such conduct.

Anonymous said...

Mommy blogger, please review this information from US DHHS, Summary of the HIPPAA Privacy Rule (notice permission #5):
Under the title of Permitted Uses and Disclosures: A covered entity is permitted, but not required, to use and disclose protected health information, without an individual’s authorization, for the following purposes or situations: (1) To the Individual (unless required for access or accounting of disclosures); (2) Treatment, Payment, and Health Care Operations; (3) Opportunity to Agree or Object; (4) Incident to an otherwise permitted use and disclosure; (5) Public Interest and Benefit Activities; and (6) Limited Data Set for the purposes of research, public health or health care operations. 18 Covered entities may rely on professional ethics and best judgments in deciding which of these permissive uses and disclosures to make...
(5) Public Interest and Benefit Activities. The Privacy Rule permits use and disclosure of protected health information, without an individual’s authorization or permission, for 12 national priority purposes. 28 These disclosures are permitted, although not required, by the Rule in recognition of the important uses made of health information outside of the health care context. Specific conditions or limitations apply to each public interest purpose, striking the balance between the individual privacy interest and the public interest need for this information. Required by Law. Covered entities may use and disclose protected health information withoutindividual authorization as required by law(including by statute, regulation, or court orders). 29
Public Health Activities. Covered entities may disclose protected health information to: (1) public health authorities authorized by law to collect or receive such information for preventing or controlling disease, injury, or disability and to public health or other government authorities authorized to receive reports of child abuse and neglect; (2) entities subject to FDA regulation regarding FDA regulated products or activities for purposes such as adverse event reporting, tracking of products, product recalls, and postmarketing surveillance; (3) individuals who may have contracted or been exposed to a communicable disease when notification is authorized by law; and (4) employers, regarding employees, when requested by employers, for information concerning a work-related illness or injury or workplace related medical surveillance, because such information is needed by the employer to comply with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OHSA), the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MHSA), or similar state law. 30 See OCR “Public Health” Guidance; CDC Public Health and HIPAA Guidance.
Health Oversight Activities. Covered entities may disclose protected health information to health oversight agencies (as defined in the Rule) for purposes of legally authorized health oversight activities, such as audits and investigations necessary for oversight of the health care system and government benefit programs. 32
Law Enforcement Purposes. Covered entities may disclose protected health information to law enforcement officials for law enforcement purposes under the following six circumstances, and subject to specified conditions: (1) as required by law (including court orders, court-ordered warrants, subpoenas) and administrative requests; (2) to identify or locate a suspect, fugitive, material witness, or missing person; (3) in response to a law enforcement official’s request for information about a victim or suspected victim of a crime; (4) to alert law enforcement of a person’s death, if the covered entity suspects that criminal activity caused the death; (5) when a covered entity believes that protected health information is evidence of a crime that occurred on its premises; and (6) by a covered health care provider in a medical emergency not occurring on its premises, when necessary to inform law enforcement about the commission and nature of a crime, the location of the crime or crime victims, and the perpetrator of the crime. 34
Serious Threat to Health or Safety. Covered entities may disclose protected health information that they believe is necessary to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to a person or the public, when such disclosure is made to someone they believe can prevent or lessen the threat (including the target of the threat). Covered entities may also disclose to law enforcement if the information is needed to identify or apprehend an escapee or violent criminal. 40

Anonymous said...

Addtionally, under the title State Law: Preemption. In general, State laws that are contrary to the Privacy Rule are preempted by the federal requirements, which means that the federal requirements will apply. 85 “Contrary” means that it would be impossible for a covered entity to comply with both the State and federal requirements, or that the provision of State law is an obstacle to accomplishing the full purposes and objectives of the Administrative Simplification provisions of HIPAA. 86 The Privacy Rule provides exceptions to the general rule of federal preemption for contrary State laws that (1) relate to the privacy of individually identifiable health information and provide greater privacy protections or privacy rights with respect to such information, (2) provide for the reporting of disease or injury, child abuse, birth, or death, or for public health surveillance, investigation, or intervention, or (3) require certain health plan reporting, such as for management or financial audits. Exception Determination. In addition, preemption of a contrary State law will not occur if HHS determines, in response to a request from a State or other entity or person, that the State law: • Is necessary to prevent fraud and abuse related to the provision of or payment for health care,
• Is necessary to ensure appropriate State regulation of insurance and health plans to the extent expressly authorized by statute or regulation,
• Is necessary for State reporting on health care delivery or costs,
• Is necessary for purposes of serving a compelling public health, safety, or welfare need, and, if a Privacy Rule provision is at issue, if the Secretary determines that the intrusion into privacy is warranted when balanced against the need to be served; or
• Has as its principal purpose the regulation of the manufacture, registration, distribution, dispensing, or other control of any controlled substances (as defined in 21 U.S.C. 802), or that is deemed a controlled substance by State law.

Concerned Mommy said...

Complaintant #2..is there any way you can contact me concerning the procedures of MMC via email?(leave me an address)...unfortunately, I had one of those births where things just didn't go as planned..and things just don't add up.

complaintant #2 said...

concerned mommy,
I set up a temporary email where you can contact me. I will try to give you some insight and refer you on to one or all of the investigators I am in contact with. Please contact me at CmplntNumber2@aol.com.

The Mommy Blawger said...

Anonymous - I *know* all that. That is what I meant when I stated, in my original post "I assume that HIPAA exempts healthcare providers from liability when complying with a legitimate court order or other legal process." That is not the question.

The problem is that law enforcement is not a "covered entity" under HIPAA. So is there no longer any protection for the patient's confidential health information once those files are in the hands of law enforcement, prosecutors, government agencies, etc.?

katherine said...

I had my baby there in December of 08. I had two prior csections and this was my first all natural birth. I had an amazing experience, only pushed for one half hour and no tearing at all. NO vacuum was used, and they did NOT make pills for me NOR did they offer to make pills for me. I took the placenta home and did it MYSELF! Shari helped me when every doctor I could find turned me away for a VBAC attempt. She showed respect and she cared for me throughout my pregnancy in a very professional way. The state of FL now has passed a law: even though I have a "proven pelvis" I cannot have another VBAC at the birth center. I would have to have the baby at home or possibly get another cesarean in the hospital. I can birth naturally but the state won't let me do so in the manner I choose. Infuriating!!!

AnneMarie said...

Shari has a new website and so do I. Check out

www.miamimaternitycenter.info

Anonymous said...

it makes me angry someone doing something so wonderful in this messed society gets a bad wrap. i had my second child at the maternity center in March of 08. it was a wonderful experience from the first time i set foot in the place. Shari is a wonderful person who cares for each of her moms. she cousiders them family. i was offered placenta pills. i know mine were not contaminated. i was the only birth that day. i did choose not to take them only because it seemed strange to me. i know the are proven facts they help with hormone balance after giving birth. i will have another baby at the center, and will pray for them. it is unfair to pass judgement unless you have the real facts. I highly reccomend giving birth at miami maternity center.

la Negra de Casa Carmi said...

does anyone know what the new website is for Miami Maternity Center?

Kelly H. said...

I am presently a client of MMC. And I love the care I am getting. I am looking forward to having my baby in the center & if Shari is the midwife present... I'LL BE THRILLED!!

I have a great friend that gave birth to her second child w/ Shari & it was wonderful. As a result my friend became a midwife herself.

(Bcuz of my belief:)
I know what it's like to have the media trash you & only give out the info that keeps the "audience" interested. They don't cross their t's nor dot their i's. So, as a result of living thru media & persecussion by the ppl that believe what these reporters put out. I believe that the only way to be sure of who Shari is, is by having contact w/ her & the center. And of course informing myself.

I believe that ALL things that happen on earth is mandated by GOD. He has it all in His hands. I trust Shari & the midwives trained by her.

I know that I will have a wonderful birth & my baby is in awesome hands!! Shari & the girls have the privilege of bringing to earth treasures in those beautiful vessels. And God will be sure that HIS babies are always well taken care of.

The best day!!!!

Shari supporter said...

I had two successful VBAC's with Shari and had the most incredible experiences, especially since I couldn't find anyone else who would do a VBAC. Also, I have absolutely no doubt that both births, for two separate reasons, would have resulted in another C-section if it weren't for Shari. She is absolutely amazing, talented and experienced. I hope she can deliver the rest of my babies.

Anonymous said...

Shari Daniels is the most competent and caring medical practitioner I have yet to meet. I had an amazing waterbirth at her center. Throughout the pregnancy and postpartum care I was treated with respect and love by the staff. I got a great education at the free birth classes and love the breastfeeding support and labor support that I received. Whatever these allegations are, I think its important for each person to go check out Miami Maternity Center for herself and make an educated choice!

Anonymous said...

This is my first time on this blog and honestly, all these allegations have taken me by surprise. I knew Shari. We met a long time ago and she delivered my second child. It was a great experience and totally opposite to the horrible experience I had delivering my first child at a hospital. My third child was born in a hospital but that was a good experience. She never offered me any pills aside from primrose and prenatal pills. I knew her staff well and I knew at the time that placentas were properly disposed of. So, this is quite surprising. And if I was a student there, my conscience would never allow me to make pills from placentas especially under unsanitary conditions. That would have been the end of our relationship. If this is all true, then I feel really badly for her and all the persons who suffered because of her unfortunate actions.

Wendy Hoon Langen said...

Shari Daniels provides an excellent service to all mothers who birth at her center. I credtit her personally with helping me avoid a C-Section. She is the most experienced birth attendant in South Florida.
Of course placentas were not given to anyone other than their own mothers. Desication of one's own placenta was an optional service provided by midwives.

yakova said...

I was there during the raid. And have learnt that there is no evidence of mixing up women's placentas. This was a service provided to birthing women for their own convenience and at no extra charge. Its just an excuse used by officials to try and find a weak spot in one of the best birthing centers in this country.

yakova said...

God willing, The midwives at MMC will continue doing their noble work and succeed is assisting laboring women in having the birth of their choice!

Dana Schultz RN said...

I am furious that my money (Government Money) and people armed with guns, were used to raid Shari Daniel's Center while my own chart was scooped up by the state. And the state, with all the power and the use of deadly force, chose to use it against my midwife on Christmas Eve and I find that really quite disturbing.
I have supported Shari and all her good work and will continue to do so in the future.
I was offered my placenta but was NEVER given already made pills and would love to stand up in a court of law for Shari and testify in defense of her.
How much do you want to bet that the government troll that is reading this blog won't be asking for my phone number?
I know that begin harassed by the government comes with the territory that Shari is in but that can't make it easy for her or easy for those of use who work really hard to use her services.
I have and will continue to trust her with my life and the lives of my babies.
And although I got no answer whatsoever, when I called the state to get my chart out of their hands, Mr. Government Guy? Can I please have my chart back now?
636-578-5813

katherine said...

What Dana said! My chart is gone too :( I heart Shari!

Amanda said...

Didn't they find her innocent on these charges?
Found this on http://whitecollarcrimenews.com/2009/01/03/miami-maternity-center-reopens-and-owner-responds-after-raid/
"update on the witchhunt (that IS what happened): the FDA & AHCA investigation and lab found NO contamination or cross-contamination whatsoever in the placentas that they seized in their ridiculous raid last December. This fact was very quietly swept under the rug after all of the big noise they made about Shari and MMC “endangering mothers” by giving them their OWN placentas. They found nothing! And as to the all of the investigations and inspections that are being thrown out there, I did my own research on MMC, as a pregnant woman I wanted to know and so I went online and read all of the public records from AHCA, the regulations and the inspection reports. All of these people are repeatedly mentioning these inspections but they don’t include that the inspectors found nothing, no violations other than 2 small rule notes regarding location of virtamins for storage and posting of CPR renewals and licenses, NOT that certs/lic were not held but that they weren’t posted. Does this sound like a birth center or midwife who is running a house of horrors like they make it out to sound? Another very important thing for mothers-to-be to know about this whole mess is that 9 of the 11 “complaints” that precipitated the inspections were made by the SAME PERSON who was NOT a client or even pregnant. I suspect this person is behind much of the incessant comments and misinformation online this year. Remember, anyone can make a complaint to AHCA and they are required by law to investigate whether the complaint is valid or even has basis. So when you hear that an inspection or investigation took place remember there may be nothing more than one persons personal agenda, even vendetta, behind it."

Anonymous said...

I delivered my baby at the Miami Maternity Center. They explained the process of dehydrating the placenta to me and told me where to get the capsules. I did it myself, they never offered to do it for me. I am having my next baby there. They are professional and caring. The allegations are ridiculous, all the unfounded and unsubstantiated comments I have read really trouble me. I guess in this society once someone points a finger everyone jumps to believe it and add to it without any actual knowledge of the facts -- how sad.

Complaintant #2 said...

http://ww2.doh.state.fl.us/FinalOrderNet/folistbrowse.aspx?LicId=41&ProCde=%203201&discpln=AC%20Filed

Complaintant #2 said...

Findings of Shari Daniels' probable cause hearing:

http://ww2.doh.state.fl.us/FinalOrderNet/folistbrowse.aspx?LicId=41&ProCde=%203201&discpln=AC%20Filed

Anonymous said...

You might not >heart< her so much after reading the complaints from the DOH that were filed in 2011! It looks like the DOH FINALLY did their homework...

http://ww2.doh.state.fl.us/FinalOrderNet/folistbrowse.aspx?LicId=41&ProCde=%203201&discpln=AC%20Filed

Anonymous said...

Shari left the country when a mother died in her Maternity Center in El Paso years ago. She keeps resurfacing and staring birth centers. She recommended if students did a transport to steal everything that wasn't nailed down in exam rooms. This gives an indication of her personality dissorder. We had pitocin in the center when it was illegal for midwives to have it In fact the pitocin was hanging in a purse on a door nob and if authorities came in one midwife was to pick up the purse and walk out the door, While I was a favored student at the time those who weren't could expect to be physically slapped, humiliated and suffer emotional abuse. What confused the issue is that we loved birth, and we helped women have good ones. Shari's willingness to play chess with the law and people's lives because of her incredible ego is famous. It is sort of like the good upstanding community member that people praise while being unaware they abuse their children. The good they do does not make the bad they do less wrong

Gaby said...

I can't believe what I am reading. My first daughter was born there, and I have nothing but gratitude to Shari and all the staff at MMC, they were always kind, helpful, and concern. They made my experience a very amazing one, so much that when I was pregnant with my second child I went back, and when we found out that I was pregnant with twins Sheri went above and beyond the help me find a qualified OBGYN that will help me deliver my babies the natural way. I will always be grateful to Shari and her midwives for their care and attention.