What is a midwife?
Midwives are specialists in normal pregnancy and birth, and are qualified to care autonomously for pregnant women and their babies throughout the antenatal period, during labour and birth, and for up to 6 weeks after the baby has been born.
An independent midwife does all these things and many more. Her role can be clinical but also involves a great deal of personal and emotional support for the expectant mother. She is a ‘professional friend’ throughout pregnancy, birth and the postnatal period for her patient. She offers bespoke one to one care with warmth, kindness, and love underpinned by her clinical training and experience.
What is home birth?
Homebirth is defined as giving birth to a baby in your place of residence. Homebirth can be planned or unplanned. It can be attended by a midwife, a physician, or others, such as family members or emergency medical technicians.
Is home birth safe?
Homebirth is proven to be safe for normal healthy women who have healthy babies. There is a good amount of research to support the safety of home birth with a trained birth professional such as a midwife or doctor with good experience of home birth. Some feel that with healthy women and babies, home birth can be safer than hospital births as there are little to no clinical interventions used in home birth and no pharmaceutical drugs such as chemical oxytocin or epidurals which can cause difficulties in your labour and birth.
No birth, home or hospital comes with a %100 guarantee and this should be understood by all parents.
Who is present at a home birth?
Normally in a homebirth you are supported by your midwife and a second midwife who acts as a support to as well. Your partner and anyone else you feel you want with you at this time. Many women have a Doula or their mother with them as extra support. This is most helpful when there are siblings to consider.
Do midwives have emergency drugs and training?
Yes, midwives come with baby resuscitation equipment and drugs to stop hemorrhages in mothers
What happens in case of emergency?
In an emergency your midwife will accompany you to your nearest hospital for help.
In an urgency your midwife will accompany you to your hospital of choice and where possible continue her support of your care with the hospital team.
Will you be on call for me 24 hours a day for labour and birth support?
Yes, from 36 weeks we are on call for your birth 24 hours a day 7 days a week until baby is born.
Some helpful research and evidence
- NICE guidelines
- Cochrane library