ABOUT MARTHA ZAVALA, DNP, CNM
Certified Nurse Midwife
Baylor University, Waco, TX
Martha Muniz Zavala, DNP, CNM recognized her passion to serve and advocate for women during her high school years when she participated in an internship program at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas. Translating for the Spanish-speaking women changed her life in a profound way-acting as the voice for women in their time of need felt immensely rewarding and important. Pursuing a career in women’s health nursing was the logical next step for Martha, and she went on to obtain her bachelors of science in nursing degree from Texas Woman’s University in 2001 and then practiced as a nurse in Labor & Delivery for over 15 years. Throughout her nursing career, Martha had the opportunity to serve, educate, empower and advocate for women. Additionally, she held various leadership positions including mentoring new nurses entering the obstetric specialty.
Cultivating positive birth experiences for women became so important to Martha that in 2017, she received a doctor of nurse practice (DNP) degree in Nurse-midwifery from Baylor University. As part of her doctoral studies, she developed a quality improvement project that implemented new methods to improve recognition and management of postpartum hemorrhage, receiving the “Outstanding Doctoral Project Award” for her work.
As a nurse, I saw that midwifery would allow me to practice what I love, supporting women throughout their pregnancy and helping them to achieve the birth experience they desire.
Martha considers herself a healthcare partner who helps women navigate the various stages of their reproductive lives. This is especially important to her because of the cultural riches of her diverse community. She prides herself in providing individualized patient care based on each patient’s cultural practices and beliefs, in a way that complements the most recent evidence-based care.
Martha strives to promote optimal and memorable birth outcomes by supporting, guiding, and advocating for women and their families who desire low intervention births. One of the greatest compliments received during her educational trajectory was from a father attending the delivery of his third son.
I felt relaxed, not worried or helpless. I actually felt a part of this birth, which made it extra special compared to previous experiences.
Family is exceedingly important to Martha. She is happily married to Tony and the mother of two amazing boys, Abel and Joel. Martha and her family remain active within their church. Together, the Zavala family enjoys traveling, amusement parks, sporting events, and getting their extended family together, although you might occasionally find Martha in a corner with a book or down the street on a run.