Women should have funded home birth as a real birthing option

Some women also deliberately choose to give birth freely, relying on their bodily autonomy and intuition to guide them. Women who choose to give birth freely must be respected; they don’t take the decision lightly and have often done considerable research into the risks and benefits.

The benefit of engaging a midwife privately for a planned home birth is the incredible continuity of care provided to support the birthing woman during her pregnancy, childbirth and for six weeks postpartum.

“My own home birth was the most amazing experience. I can’t wait to do it again. It was peaceful, mother-led, respectful and restorative.

The midwife is able to prescribe medications, write referrals for diagnostic tests and scans, and attend delivery with a back-up midwife, emergency medications/equipment, and medical supplies. oxygen in an emergency. Most private midwives also require you to have ambulance cover in case you need to be transferred to hospital.

Regardless of the model of planned home birth, there is a shortage of places. Before you even have your mind set on the baby growing inside you, you should immediately register with your chosen care provider. The CMP and private midwives book almost immediately. In fact, I contacted my private midwife even before I was pregnant so she knew a reservation was in order.

Planned home birth is safe, in fact, very safe. It often has better outcomes than hospital births and there is plenty of supporting evidence.

According to Homebirth New South Wales, a 2018 analysis of low- and high-risk women planning home birth versus hospital birth found that “planned home birth was associated with significantly higher rates of spontaneous vaginal birth, significantly lower rates of all obstetric interventions and significantly lower perinatal and maternal morbidities”. It is simply not true that planned home birth is unsafe.

My own home birth was the most amazing experience. I can’t wait to do it again. It was peaceful, mother-led, respectful and restorative. This was a far cry from being born in a birthing center where I was restricted by hospital policy and forced into procedures I didn’t need or want, resulting in birth trauma. .

Elisha Rose gave birth to her son at home. Picture: Cat FancoteCredit:cat fancote

My home birth was particularly normal. My husband raced to school, he came back to me in established labor, my birthing team arrived around 10am (two midwives, doula, birth photographer and my best friend), the swimming pool The delivery was swollen and filled, I entered the water around 11 am having increasingly intense surges and gently brought my baby around noon to land, following my own intuition.

No drugs, no procedures and on my own terms. My daughter watched her baby brother come into the world and by the time my older children came home from school I was sitting up in bed feeding my baby and sipping soup made by my doula. My recovery was remarkably short, I was supported by my doula and midwives for six weeks after the birth, including home cooked meals for my family, breastfeeding assistance and knitted baby items. I felt so supported and respected every step of the way.

Birth trauma is very real and affects many women in Australia. The statistics are terrifying, with one in three women describing their birth experience as traumatic, according to the Gidget Foundation Australia.


Undoubtedly, the lack of respect for women giving birth and their autonomy that many experience in hospital settings, including obstetrical violence and unnecessary interventions, has led to an increase in birth trauma which can sometimes turn into depression. and postpartum anxiety. It is these well-documented results that lead women to choose to give birth outside of a hospital setting.

There is a small but passionate movement among women for better choice in childbirth.

New Zealand and the UK have excellent publicly funded home birth programs that are available to many, but in Australia they are restricted to the few eligible or those who can afford a midwife. -private wife.

Even now, although a whole crowd is allowed to watch a football game at Optus Stadium, there are still COVID restrictions preventing women from having anyone other than their partner present to support them during their births at hospital (and they are only allowed to attend once the woman is in established labour).

The 2021 release of the award-winning Australian documentary Birth time highlights the best outcomes for women when they give birth at home with a known and consistent midwife who cares for them during pregnancy, childbirth and the postpartum period.

“One woman, one midwife” is the golden rule and should be an option available to all women in Australia.

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