Thursday, April 2, 2009

ABC 7.30 Report on homebirths

Homebirths could soon be forced underground

Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Broadcast: 01/04/2009
Reporter: Kirstin Murray

A recent review of the country's maternity services recommended the Government overhaul the power given to midwives. If the recommendations are accepted by the Health Department, some midwives could be given access to many benefits doctors have including professional indemnity insurance.

[click for Transcript]

1 comment:

Joy Johnston said...

The following comment is also posted at the ABC TV letters website:
I found the comments by Dr Ted Weaver uninformed and demonstrating no respect for or collegiality with midwives. In the past Dr Weaver has had good relations with the Australian College of Midwives, and with midwives where he practises. Now he is displaying a disdain for midwives who practise in the community. What has changed?

Homebirth is not a dangerous practice, as long as the answer to the simple question, "is mother OK, is baby OK?" is "yes". That's the midwife's job. If the answer is "no" - the best place is the hospital, and that's OK too. Midwives have a duty of care to act to promote the wellbeing of mother and child, and a physiologically normal birth is the safest way to achieve that for most women.

Homebirth women avoid dangerous drugs and invasive procedures that are common in hospital; they avoid hospital infections, and infections that are caused by interventions including vaginal examinations. Homebirth mothers and babies are able to enjoy the privacy and safety of their own home, being the focus of care by their known midwife. There is substantial scientific evidence supporting this choice.