Midwives boost for home births

Interested in home birth, hospital birth or private midwifery care? Questions or comments? Email Melissa Maimann or call 0400 418 448. Link

Record numbers of women are opting to give birth at home in Scotland’s largest city because of a new dedicated team of midwives.

Figures show double the number of mums-to-be now want home births in Glasgow and the surrounding areas.

Over 12 months in 2008 a total of 27 babies were delivered at home by NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde’s team of community midwives.

But over six months from August last year, when the team was set up, there have been 32 babies delivered by the health board’s home birth team ...

Senior midwives are already making a case for increasing the two-strong team ...

Many women prefer home births because they provide a more natural labour, with less of the medical intervention that turns some maternity wards into “baby factories” and actually save the NHS money because less likely to require Caesarian sections.

... the benefits of having a dedicated team are that women get to know their midwife before their baby is born and are likely to feel more relaxed during labour ... There is a huge level of trust there.

“... women who give birth at home are less likely to require medical intervention. Babies are more alert and breastfeed better because they mothers have less pain relief.”

... Around 10 of the women who opted for home births in Glasgow since August had to transferred to hospital as a result of developing complications ... The national rate is between 10 and 25% ...

First-time mum Issy Johnston, 33, opted for a home birth ... Leila was born ... after five hours of drug-free labour in a birthing pool in Issy’s kitchen. Partner Martin Eriksen, 32, was at her side.

... “It’s about bringing your child into the world in the calmest way possible where intervention is not the first step.

... “The best thing was that we were all in bed that night having a cuddle. If I had been in hospital Marty would have had to go home.

“I would definitely have a home birth again and I have been recommending it to other women I know.”

[The midwife] ... who delivered Issy’s baby, says being able to forge a close relationship with mums before the birth, helps promote a calmer labour ... this was particularly beneficial as two of her friends had lost babies in late pregnancy.

Anne said: “The first thing I told her at the birth was ‘Your baby is OK’ ...

Melissa Maimann, Essential Birth Consulting 0400 418 448