Michelle is a Certified Midwife (CM). She graduated from Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois in 1998 with a B.A. in Business/ Economics and from SUNY Downstate in 2007 with a Master’s degree in Midwifery. Before joining Full Circle, Michelle worked in a high volume, diverse hospital in Queens, NY where she “caught” over 300 babies and cared for hundreds of women. She practiced as a doula in New York City during her midwifery training, and she spent two years in Benin, West Africa as a Peace Corps volunteer working at a small village maternity center.
Areas of Interest
I am especially interested in childbirth education, breastfeeding and postpartum adjustment. Being in the midst of raising two young children, I know the balancing act that mothers experience daily. I enjoy helping mothers and families find community and support.
In addition to all things related to women’s health and holistic healing, I have a wide variety of interests: I love being outdoors, camping and hiking. I love exploring new places and cultures through travel. I enjoy reading, cooking, farmers’ markets, CSAs, gardening and yard sales. And most of all, I love spending time with my husband, Mike, and my two sons, Miles and Matteo.
My Path to Midwifery
My discovery of midwifery began with the discovery of home birth. I lived with a family of eight one summer during college, and for the first time heard of birthing at home with midwives. I resonated with the concept of birth as a natural, empowering life event, rather than a medical condition requiring the most advanced technology. I realized that like all mammals, women need to feel safe and secure in order to give birth. While I found myself intrigued with these “alternative” choices in childbirth, I discovered that midwives applied this concept of empowerment into all areas of women’s health, including gynecological care and family planning. Midwifery embodies my passion for women, holistic health and empowerment. I knew that I had found my calling.
My intrigue with women’s health continued throughout my experiences as a Peace Corps volunteer in Benin, West Africa. For two years, I absorbed the life and culture of my Beninese neighbors, where pregnancy, birth and raising children are as normal as sleeping and breathing. I became a regular in the maternity center, fascinated with the natural rhythms of pregnancy and motherhood in this different context. I also came to realize firsthand the intricate correlation between poverty and health, as mothers struggled to feed themselves and their babies.
Returning from Benin, I began my midwifery training and cared for women as a doula, supporting women of various cultures, incomes and education. The core components of midwifery care-- woman-centered, continuous care and helping women to make their own choices in their health-- cemented themselves in my belief system.
In my practice as a midwife, I feel privileged to support women and their families during this transformative period in their lives. I have seen women feel empowered both at home and in hospital settings. I am especially grateful for the empowering environment that is at Phelps Memorial Hospital. In contrast to many other hospitals, laboring mothers are able to freely move without continuous monitoring, use water for labor and birth, and be active participants in all decisions of their care. The entire staff works to support the needs of mother, baby and family.
My Hope for Clients
My hope for you is that you find the resources you need at Full Circle to grow in health physically, spiritually and mentally. I hope you will feel nurtured and empowered. And I hope we can help you find support for your goals through the rich community and various services that we offer. Welcome to Full Circle Women’s Health!
Anonymous Verified Patient February 11th, 2014
Friendly, warm, efficient, thorough, competent. Great bedside manner. Takes her time and makes you feel at ease.
Anonymous Verified Patient January 23rd, 2014
Michelle was very personable, knowledgeable and put me right at ease. I would use her again in the future, for sure. The office was also great -- squeezing me in when I did not have a set appointment. A+ all around!
Anonymous Verified Patient December 29th, 2013
She was there for me around every twist and turn during labor. She took my concerns seriously and was an emotional encouragement as well as an expert in midwifery. She gave advice that helped labor along while doing her best to make me more comfortable.
Anonymous Verified Patient December 24th, 2013
A very nice and amiable person, very efficient and good.
Anonymous Verified Patient December 18th, 2013
Michelle is a wonderful care provider. She is warm and caring, explains what the issues are and how to get better. She creates a great environment where I feel I can tell her anything and that she genuinely cares. I couldn't ask for more.
Anonymous Verified Patient November 23rd, 2013
I found the mid wife today to be delightful, sympathetic and helpful. She was very kind and soft with her examination which was a pleasant experience as I find vaginal exams very embarrassing and the use of the speculum normally heavy handed. Not today!
Brenda Verified Patient November 19th, 2013
If you are seeking a midwife for the delivery of your baby, I could not recommend Michelle Chiafulio enough. She has a calm demeanor, positive spirit and helped me realize my goal of natural childbirth without any interventions.
Anonymous Verified Patient November 15th, 2013
Michelle is fantastic. I felt heard and felt like we were problem solving together.
Anonymous Verified Patient November 15th, 2013
Although Michelle is not my primary provider, she still took personal interest in seeing me and treated me as if I was her patient. I was very pleased with the visit.
Anonymous Verified Patient November 11th, 2013
Michelle is professional and easy going at the same time. Michelle listened to my concerns and helped me navigate my options.
Christie Verified Patient October 2nd, 2013
Michelle is a wonderful and professional provider. She is knowledgeable and has a very caring and calm sense about her. I would highly recommend her and everyone at Full Circle. Each visit is always informative and pleasant. Thanks for the excellent care.
Anonymous Verified Patient September 2nd, 2013
My delivery was just as I wanted it. Unfortunately, I have been made to wait up to an hour for office visits.
Anonymous Verified Patient August 23rd, 2013
Michelle is an excellent midwife! She is warm, friendly, and down to earth. As a patient, she's the best medical professional I've ever had! Throughout the labor and delivery of my first child, her sweet spirit was always comforting and encouraging to me.
Anonymous Verified Patient August 1st, 2013
She is a caring and knowledgeable provider. Very satisfied with the care I received.
Anonymous Verified Patient June 30th, 2013
Michelle is wonderful - present and kind.
Anonymous Verified Patient June 24th, 2013
From the first weeks of my pregnancy to birth Michelle was positive, informative, and calming. I could not imagine being with any other doctor or midwife. She is so amazing at her job!!!
Anonymous Verified Patient June 12th, 2013
Although I had a brief wait, it was well worth it for the most positive experience I've ever had with a gynecological health care provider. I felt respected, listened to, and better educated after talking with Midwife Michelle. I definitely recommend her.
Anonymous Verified Patient May 30th, 2013
Love how she took care of me today
Anonymous Verified Patient May 20th, 2013
Without Michelle I do not think I would have made it through my birth!!
Anonymous Verified Patient May 15th, 2013
Michelle was extremely supportive and attentive. Michelle communicated well and was in tune with my body & needs. She guided me through my moments of doubt and weakness. Michelle has an aura of tranquility and is extremely soothing.
Anonymous Verified Patient April 22nd, 2013
Michelle was friendly, professional and very informative.
Stephanie Verified Patient April 14th, 2013
Michelle is extremely patient and compassionate. I think that combined with her knowledge is a rare gift. Her care was a huge difference maker in my pregnancy -she helped regardless of how unusual or time consuming.She listened and was my advocate 100%.