Are Home Births Safer For Mothers?

Home Birth

Did you have a home birth, or did you give birth in a midwife-led unit? If so, we'd love to hear about your experience.

Because according to official comment from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) today, home births and midwife-led centres are "better for mothers and often as safe for babies".

The BBC reports:

Susan Bewley, professor of complex obstetrics at King's College London and part of the team that developed the guidelines, said: "Midwifery-led settings have better outcomes for mothers than the traditional obstetric units and labour wards.

"They may be particularly suitable for all women because the rates of intervention are lower." 

However, she stressed the emphasis was on choice.

"There isn't a one-size-fits-all model for all women and that's why a range of settings providing different support for women with different needs gives you better safety overall," she added.

On the other hand, a faintly terrifying story in the Daily Mail presents an alternative view - although I don't recommend you read it if you're a first time mum or are due to give birth soon.

The premise behind these most recent headlines seems to be that 45% of women are considered low-risk and thus may be "better off" giving birth somewhere other than the doctor-led obstetric units in hospital where nine out of ten of the 700,000 babies born each year are welcomed into the world.


However, the new NICE guidelines state that 45% of women are at extremely low risk of complications, and that those mothers may be better off giving birth elsewhere.

Of course, the problem is that even low risk pregnancies can get complicated at the eleventh hour, and then there's the fact that some women just wouldn't feel safe giving birth outside of a hospital setting.

What's your view?

1 comment

  • Happylou
    I had a hospial with first and home birth with seconded was not planned she was supper quick daddy delivered her and she was in sack so much more relaxed and got in to own bed and not poke and checked all the time like in hospial

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