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Study on Safety of Home Birth

Looking for The Lactivist? She's retired. But you CAN still find Jen blogging. These days, she's runs A Flexible Life. Join her for life, recipes, projects and the occasional rant.

Friday, March 24, 2006

I'll be breaking this study down into several different points in the upcoming weeks...but I wanted to give a link to the full study for those that are interested.

Study on safety of home birth published in the British Medical Journal.

The study covered 5418 women in the United States and Canada that intended to have a home birth attended by a midwife during the year 2000. The study was designed to cover issues like maternal and infant mortality, maternal and infant morbidity, rates of transfer, reasons for transfer, interventions and even rates of satisfaction. It's also important to note that the study included the birth of singleton, vertex babies born at at least 37 weeks gestation.

The high level finding of the study is that home birth is "as safe" for a low-risk woman as a hospital birth and that home birth actually has lower incidents of intervention (episiotimy, c-section, etc...).

An interesting statement from the study...

Women who started birth at home were on average older, of a lower socioeconomic status and higher educational achievement, and less likely to be African-American or Hispanic than women having full gestation, vertex, singleton hospital births in the United States in 2000.

More coming in the future...I'll be posting on transfer rates and how they break down, and doing some posts on c-section rates and other intervention rates.

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