On Friday 12th August Home Birth Canterbury hosted the first New Zealand screening of the US documentary Why Not Home? The Surprising Birth Choices of Doctors and Nurses. The home birth community including midwives, student midwives, home birth families, birth…
This movement isn’t about natural birth vs. medicated birth. It’s not about hospital birth vs. homebirth or birth center birth. It’s about women being capable of making safer, more informed decisions about their care and that of their babies, when they are given full and accurate information about their care options, including the potential harms, benefits, and alternatives. It’s about respect for women and their decisions in childbirth, including how, where, and with whom they give birth; and the right to be treated with dignity and compassion.
After years of planning, this is a significant achievement that will be a huge benefit for babies in the Christchurch NICU.
The Victorian government has opened the door to more publicly funded home birth services with organised hospital backup.
Hungarian women wishing to birth naturally face an uphill battle. The hospital system is highly interventionist; including routine inductions and episiotomies. The cost to women for obstetric care is significant, up to a month’s wages. While our maternity care system here in New Zealand provides free, woman-centred, competent home birth midwifery care, this was not always so. Stories like this one give us a chance to reflect on what we have, and what we stand to lose if it is not protected.