Home births: a woman’s choice?
Maternity services are rapidly adapting the way they work in light of the pandemic. Pregnant women are being asked to attend antenatal appointments alone or remotely in order to reduce risk of infection. In some areas, the option to have a midwife-led home birth has been suspended. A recent report from the BBC suggests that as many as one third of Trusts could have removed home birth as an option.
For those who are not considered high-risk and have given birth before, home birth is often a very positive experience and clinical outcomes are good, w
Key learning points
Sharing information with the multi-disciplinary team helps break down barriers and reduce anxiety. Women should have an opportunity to discuss concerns and have questions answered face-to-face rather than a written response.
There is a huge benefit for women to have access to a service that supports closure and shared understanding following a poor experience whether from the birth or postnatally. Providing reassurance that their concerns are addressed and there is organisational learning from their feedback.
Women are at the centre of
The following safety issues were identified during the HSIB’s initial investigation and will form the basis for the ongoing investigation:
referral from the emergency department into early pregnancy services
provision of early pregnancy assessment services that allow for the timely diagnosis and optimum management of ectopic pregnancies.
Our pregnant women are still being offered good choices in their birth experience such as homebirth and water birth, so long as they are well. I did two lovely home births this week. We are definitely seeing a rise in people transferring to our homebirth service. I do think there is a concern nationally about high risk women choosing to homebirth unassisted, in areas where maternity services have suspended homebirth as an option. Because women in my area still have the option of a homebirth, it’s not something we’re experiencing.
Birthing partners and limited visits
Key learning points
Always consider individual benefits and risks when making decisions about pregnancy.
Continuing medication or preventing illness with vaccination may be the best way to keep both mother and baby healthy - ask a specialist.
Black and Asian women have a higher risk of dying in pregnancy.
Older women are at greater risk of dying
Be body aware - some symptoms are normal in pregnancy but know the red flags and always seek specialist advice if symptoms persist.
Overweight or obese women are at higher risk of blood clots including in early pregn
The WHO Safe Childbirth Checklist is a tool intended to improve the quality of care for women and babies at the time of childbirth. The Checklist is an organised list of evidence-based essential birth practices targeting major causes of maternal deaths, intrapartum-related stillbirths and neonatal deaths that occur in facilities around the world.