Photo Of The Day

Auschwitz 31. Women survivors huddled in a prisoner barracks shortly after Soviet forces liberated the Auschwitz camp. Auschwitz, Poland, 1945.

Auschwitz 31. Women survivors huddled in a prisoner barracks shortly after Soviet forces liberated the Auschwitz camp. Auschwitz, Poland, 1945.

How One Woman Delivered 3,000 Babies During The Holocaust

Auschwitz had all sorts of facilities, such as sleeping quarters, offices, kitchens and latrines. It also had a “sick ward” where, in atrocious conditions, sick prisoners were looked after by physicians who were prisoners themselves. Anyone who appeared unlikely to get well was killed. Thus the physicians were constantly concealing serious cases by falsifying records to permit a longer stay to those who otherwise would have been sent to the crematorium. Almost all survivors of Auschwitz suffered from typhoid, a disease that qualified inmates for liquidation, but was never reported thanks to the courage of the physicians. They were risking their lives since the punishment for breaking any rule in the concentration camp was death. Auschwitz also had a “maternity-ward.” Many of the women who arrived at the camp were pregnant. They were needed for work; their babies were not. One of the midwives working in the ward was Stanislawa Leszczynska.

When Stanislawa Leszczy?ska first became a midwife, she never could have imagined that she would one day be whisked away from her home in Poland, where she routinely walked miles to deliver babies, and into the real-life nightmare of Auschwitz. After the murder of her husband in Poland and the forced removal of her son to another work camp, Stanislawa and her daughter entered Auschwitz with only one hope: that they would survive.

Born Stanislawa Zambrzyska in 1896, she married Bronislaw Leszczynski in 1916 and together they had two sons and a daughter. In 1922, she graduated from a school for midwives and began working in the poorest districts of Lodz. In pre-war Poland, babies were normally delivered at home. Stanislawa made herself available at any time, walking many kilometers to the homes of the women she helped. Her children recall that she often worked nights but she never slept during the day.

After the war, she returned to her job in Lodz. Her husband had been killed in the Warsaw uprising of 1944, but all of her children survived and, inspired by their mother’s example, went on to become physicians. Stanislawa supported their education, earning the family livelihood through a devoted service to childbirth.

In March 1957, as her retirement neared, a reception was organized to commemorate her 35 years in the profession. Her son, Dr. Bronislaw Leszczynski, remarked to her before the reception that she might be asked about Auschwitz. Until that time, she had said nothing about her work in the concentration camp. Her son began taking notes and later, during the reception when all the speeches were over, he stood up and told his mother’s story.

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Face of the day


(From left): Miranda Scott-Simmonds with baby ‘Z’, daughter Dillon and husband Jacob. Photo / supplied


Welcome to the world Z.

Your rapid entrance at a Z service station in Mount Maunganui yesterday will be a tale told at your 21st and for many years to come. I do hope it stays your nickname only though, as there are some poor souls who have been named after bus stops where they were born so I hope you avoid that fate. Still, Zee has a cute ring to it and you come from a very cute family so maybe it will suit you after all.

Enjoy your life



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How did she hold on to her job?

A midwife who had an affair with her client’s partner during the pregnancy has been chastised by the health and disability commissioner.

In a report released today, Commissioner Anthony Hill ruled by entering into a sexual relationship with the woman’s partner and continuing to provide midwifery services at the same time, the midwife failed to provide services in accordance with ethical and professional standards and breached the Code of Health and Disability Services Consumers’ Rights.

The self-employed midwife had been close personal friends of the couple for some time, and provided care to the woman during her second pregnancy.

In 2013, the woman became pregnant with her third child and employed the midwife again.

“The final two months of my pregnancy were horrible. I was working, I had two small children and I thought I was going crazy to be thinking that my midwife and so-called friend was sleeping with the father of my children. Read more »

Homebirth Midwives kill babies so can’t get insurance

? Sydney Morning Herald

There has been?much debate over midwife care.

In Australia there is also a debate caused by the insurance industry and a law change:

In another issue, there are fears home birth will be abandoned by registered midwives next year if the federal government does not find an insurance company to cover them.

As of July 2013, midwives will require insurance for home births if they are to stay registered. At the moment, they are exempted while the federal government searches for an insurer.

Michelle Meares, from Home Birth Australia, said the government had not found an insurer willing to cover midwives for home births.

Trust the insurance market to know the truth about home births. Maybe Tony Ryall could look into forcing home birth midwives to take out insurance here…it is perhaps the easiest way to tidy up the industry.