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Thread: HAVE YOU READ THIS?????? herald articale..."home birth is not a safe birth"

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    Default HAVE YOU READ THIS?????? herald articale..."home birth is not a safe birth"

    A home birth is not a safe birth - National Comment - The Herald

    The further you read the worse it gets! i cant believe they call this reporting!


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    A home birth is not a safe birth - National Comment - The Herald


    A homebirth is not a safe birth

    Reports this week of the death during childbirth of the baby of a leading home birth advocate at her inner-western Sydney home come just as the Government is considering a review of maternity services.

    The review, while advocating an increased role for midwives in co-operative settings with doctors, rejected Government funding for home births when it was released in February. This was despite the fact that more than half its submissions came from a minority of home birth advocates, who have besieged the Health Minister, Nicola Roxon, ever since.

    The most ardent of lobby groups is Joyous Birth, whose convener, Janet Fraser, 40, tragically lost her baby after several days of labour at her Croydon Park home, which ended on March 27, when an ambulance was called. The NSW Coroner's Office yesterday confirmed it had received a report of the baby's death.

    The last thing anyone wants to do is compound the grief of Fraser and her family, so we will spare readers further details. But as one of the most extreme proponents of home births, Joyous Birth has been influential in persuading pregnant women to shun medical intervention in childbirth. It describes as "birth rape" doctor intervention that saves the lives of mothers and babies, and has made Australia one of the safest countries in the world for childbirth.

    Its website is popular, boasting 30,000 visitors each month and claiming to have doubled its membership to 1000 last year. So it is important to dispel the myth it promotes: that home birth is safe, medical intervention dangerous and obstetricians evil incarnate.

    As a Wodonga obstetrician, Dr Pieter Mourik, says, the natural birth lobby "has been advocating dangerous practices and I believe the media has a responsibility to publish these cases when a totally avoidable baby death occurs … so gullible, pregnant women are not persuaded to follow these risky practices".

    Dr Andrew Pesce, Westmead Hospital's clinical director of women's health, says he knows of four home births in the past eight months in western Sydney in which the baby has died, along with a further four home births in which the baby has suffered possible brain damage from oxygen deprivation; preventable tragedies if prompt medical care had been available.

    Despite the disasters, Joyous Birth continues to promote 2009 as "Birth Trauma Awareness" year, urging members to write graffiti on hospital walls: "Birth rape on demand, a surgeon's right to choose"; "Did your rapist wear a mask and gown? Mine did"; "Episiotomy is genital mutilation"; "Fingers, forceps, hands, ventouse, baby - which one belongs in a vagina?"; "My body, my birth, my choice".

    The website features a fantastic account of an emergency caesarean by a woman calling herself Sungaikecil:

    "There is a man at the end of my bed. He is big. He is overbearing. He has soft hands. His eyes are strange … He tells me to lay [sic] back … He tells me to open my legs. I don't want to … He uses his arm to spread them. I fight him. He fights back. I am scared … He enters me. With his hand. With his fist … Where's my mum …

    "There are sharp things inside me. There are people's hands inside me … My stomach is cut. One swift cut. The man is cutting me. He is scarring me. He laughs. He does not look at me. He admires his cut. The slit he made. He has wounded me."

    Honestly. At the end of this deathless prose, she says she is "handed a baby". Hello? wasn't that the point?

    Even if few women (2.5 per cent) are convinced by such propaganda to opt for a home birth, the anti-hospital message is pervasive, making women fear and reject basic medical help, as Ellen discovered, when she gave birth last year to her first child at Orange Base Hospital

    "I'm still traumatised by the experience, and not just because it was horribly painful. Mostly, I'm furious," she wrote to me last month.

    "It was virtually impossible to find anything written which was not informed by the ideologies of the powerful, anti-medical intervention natural birth lobby … [They] made my first experience of birth more painful than it needed to be …

    "Two good things happened during the 18 ? hours of trying to give birth to my son. The first was the male anaesthetist giving me an epidural, the second was the male obstetrician delivering my son with a vacuum …

    "It did not take me an inordinately long time to recover because I had medical interventions. I just felt great about having a healthy baby. The only thing that was hard to recover from was that nobody had just told me the truth about birth - that it's agonising, that it's not that important in the great scheme of being a mother."

    Women seduced by the "empowering" idea that only a woman knows how to deliver her child forget, as Pesce said yesterday, that "100 years ago one in 10 women died from complications of childbirth, and [one in 10] babies".

    Pesce, also the president of the National Association of Specialist Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, was at pains yesterday to point out he knew about Fraser's tragedy two weeks ago but did not mention it. It was only when the story became public that he revealed seven other home birth disasters he has encountered since July.

    The cases are mainly from the Blue Mountains area, and two stillbirths occurred at the hands of "doulas" - women paid to help women give birth, often former midwives. In one case last September, Pesce says the woman had been warned of the risk of a previous caesarean scar rupturing but had been offered a trial labour at Nepean Hospital. She delivered a stillborn boy at home three days later.

    "The trouble is we take safety for granted now and are arguing about quality issues, like maternal satisfaction, which is important. But I'm sorry, as a clinician, survival is the most important thing." Amen to that.

    Source: Sydney Morning Herald

    Are home births safe? What do you think?

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    Thanks Kate, couldnt figure out how to post the artical i was so cranky after reading it!

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    The article is completely bias. They didn't even bother with statistics.
    They didn't mention the majority of babies born at home safely and happily. It's really unfair and uneducated.

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    Kamarine: totally agree with you!

    I cant believe that 31 people have read this an not posted a reply..... Tell me what you are thinking people????

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    Quote Originally Posted by Milly View Post
    Kamarine: totally agree with you!

    I cant believe that 31 people have read this an not posted a reply..... Tell me what you are thinking people????
    I'm thinking that it's Good Friday, my hot cross buns are in the oven, I should be getting ready for church and I'm wondering if I need to take a net free day or two so that I don't blow a blood vessel in my brain reading tripe like that article.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Toomanytoomany View Post
    I'm thinking that it's Good Friday, my hot cross buns are in the oven, I should be getting ready for church and I'm wondering if I need to take a net free day or two so that I don't blow a blood vessel in my brain reading tripe like that article.

    LOL toomany! hope you enjoy the hot cross buns and dont blow that blood vessel, no doubt they would blame that on the pregnancy not the damb artical!!!

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    "The trouble is we take safety for granted now and are arguing about quality issues, like maternal satisfaction, which is important. But I'm sorry, as a clinician, survival is the most important thing." Amen to that.

    I think this s the problem.

    As a CLINICIAN. Not a Healer. There is no holistic approach in western modern medicine, I dont care how alternative your doctor likes to think he is and how many tell you to do Accupuncture to help your cycles.

    The very fact that this 'healthcare professional' dismisses maternal satisfaction, comfort and security as un-related to survival illustrates the essence of the problem with the modern medical situation.
    The notions of holistic approach and balanced healing are forgotten and replaced by studies and drugs and the assumption that because someone bled out after a PPH at home, with a midwife, that that couldnt possibly happen in a control environment like the petri dish of a hospital with an OB.

    I don't get angry about the disregarding of maternal desire anymore, I get angry about the fact that society as a whole refuse to acknowledge that western medicine is incomplete and in no way shape or form begins to go close to understanding the human body and how one interacts with another, especially in a birthing situation. Only when people understand that they don't have the answers will we understand that a clinicians view is not the only view in childbrith worth considering.

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    I think that is the worst article I have ever read. There was so little actual information I am amazed it was published.
    I am not someone who would opt for a homebirth myself but all I am left with are questions that the writer obviously didn't think were important enough to cover.

    How many babies died in hospitals since July? How many healthey babies were homebirthed in that time? How did those homebirthed babies die? Could anything have been done about the stillbirths "at the hands of doulas" or would they have still been still births in a hospital? Was the stillbirth in the home VBAC actually due to a rupture, or was that just thrown in for fun to scare people about VBAC too?

    Lets just hope that the general public who read the article are intelligent enough to see it for the piece of rubbish that it is!

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    Quote Originally Posted by LimeSlice View Post

    I don't get angry about the disregarding of maternal desire anymore, I get angry about the fact that society as a whole refuse to acknowledge that western medicine is incomplete and in no way shape or form begins to go close to understanding the human body and how one interacts with another, especially in a birthing situation. Only when people understand that they don't have the answers will we understand that a clinicians view is not the only view in childbrith worth considering.
    I agree with you. I'm pretty sure alot of 'medical' cures/advice have been incorporated from holistic sources over the year. I could be wrong, but stuff like ginger for nausea is something alot of medical people recommend, which I consider holistic. Yet the same people will shake their head at similiar remedies etc.

    The other thing I forgot to mention is, while they're slandering the whole topic and making the poor womens grief public news, they fail to mention cause of death. (If I missed, I'm sorry, I was really mad reading it!)
    Im sorry if it sounds heartless, but I've heard so many stories of babies dying at/during birth. And in my experience its been a mostly at hospital. I find place irrelevant to all of the situations that were presented.

    Basing a whole arguement on that situation as a turning point without all the facts, it leads to misinforming people. Theres going to a whole fistful of people out there that now think of homebirths as dangerous. All because the poor woman had a homebirth and her baby died, but no why, or what happened, just its bad and dangerous!

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    You might also want to check out the other thread - http://bellybelly.com.au/forums/news...tragedies.html

    *sighs*

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    Typical Herald-Sun drivel - I am so glad I ever buy it!

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    Here are some research articles that they did not bother to consider

    by T A Wiegers, M J N C Keirse, J van der Zee, and G A H Berghs
    BMJ 23 November 1996; 313: 1309-1313.
    'Conclusions: The outcome of planned home births is at least as good as that of planned hospital births in women at low risk receiving midwifery care in the Netherlands.'
    'In multiparous women, perinatal outcome was significantly better for planned home births than for planned hospital births, with or without control for background variables.'

    Ursula Ackermann-Liebrich, Thomas Voegeli, Kathrin Gunter-Witt, Isabelle Kunz, Maja Zullig, Christian Schindler, Margrit Maurer, and Zurich Study Team
    BMJ 23 November 1996; 313: 1313-1318
    'During delivery the home birth group needed significantly less medication and fewer interventions whereas no differences were found in durations of labour, occurrence of severe perineal lesions, and maternal blood loss. Perinatal death was recorded in one planned hospital delivery and one planned home delivery (overall perinatal mortality 2.3/1000). There was no difference between home and hospital delivered babies in birth weight, gestational age, or clinical condition. Apgar scores were slightly higher and umbilical cord pH lower in home births, but these differences may have been due to differences in clamping and the time of transportation'.
    Conclusion: 'Healthy low risk women who wish to deliver at home have no increased risk either to themselves or to their babies.'

    Howe KA
    Med J Aust 1988 Sep 19;149(6):296-7, 300, 302
    This study covered 165 women planning a home birth with a registered midwife. 31% of the women were first-time mothers. 16% of the study group transferred to hospital, 5% of the group had an assisted delivery, and 1% had caesareans. One baby died, from congenital abnormalities.
    'The conclusion is drawn that women who choose to have a home birth in the south-west of Western Australia may do so with a high degree of safety.'

    By Wood**** HC, Read AW, Bower C, Stanley FJ, Moore DJ
    Midwifery 1994 Sep;10(3):125-35
    976 women who booked a home birth were compared with a matched group of 2,928 women planning a hospital birth. Women in the home birth group had longer labours (presumably because they would not have been accelerated with drugs or other interventions), but were less likely to have induction, caesarean, or other operative delivery, and were less likely to have complications of labour overall. However, the home birth group was more likely to have third stage problems such as heavy bleeding or retained placenta (perhaps because home birth mothers were more likely to specify a natural third stage? For example, I chose to have a physiological third stage to avoid side-effects of the drugs involved - often nausea - and early cord clamping, even though I was aware that heavy blood loss was more likely).
    Babies in the home birth group were in better condition at birth - hospital group babies were more likely to take a while to start breathing, to need resuscitation, and to have Apgar scores under 8. Perinatal mortality was slightly higher overall in the home birth group - no explanation for this is given, but the authors of the study state that the increase was not (statistically) significant. However, neonatal mortality (after birth) was significantly higher in the hospital group. The authors note that more research is needed.
    'KEY CONCLUSIONS: Planned home births in Western Australia appear to be associated with less overall maternal and neonatal morbidity and less intervention than hospital births.'

    Also Western Australia are planning to increase their funding of homebirth. I don?t think that the Western Australian Government would consider putting more money into home births if they did not believe it was safe

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    Forgot to add
    In the UK where homebirth is fully funded by the Government, they are trying to encourage more women to birth at home

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    more quality journalism from the The Herald...I feel sorry for all those so called "gullible" women who will be brainwashed by the home birth lobby into endangering themselves and their babies...because of course everybody knows that pregnant mothers are stupid and incapable of making informed decisions, because being pregnant automatically means our intelligence goes out the window and we need to be treated like children. Because a woman who is convinced by her doctor to have an induction or a c/s because her baby is "too big" and it is "safer" is not being brainwashed at all...no no because when a doctor says it it must be true because they are superhuman and never wrong about anything.

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    I just got this email

    708 babies born at home in 2006. All were liveborn.

    Homebirths

    In 2006, 708 planned homebirths, representing 0.3% of all women who gave birth, were reported

    nationally. The highest proportion of homebirths occurred in the Northern Territory (Table

    3.11). It is probable that not all homebirths are reported to the perinatal data collections.

    The mean age of mothers who gave birth at home in 2006 was 32.1 years (Table 3.34). The

    proportion of mothers aged less than 20 years was 0.7%, and the proportion aged 35 years and

    over was 33.6%. The proportion of mothers who gave birth at home who identified as being of

    Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander origin was 0.7%. The largest proportion of women who had

    a homebirth lived in major cities (61.9%) (Table 3.34).

    48

    Of mothers who gave birth at home, one-quarter had their first baby (25.0%), and 74.4% were

    multiparous. The method of birth was spontaneous vaginal for 97.5% of women who gave birth

    at home (Table 3.34), and the presentation was vertex for 97.3% of women who gave birth at

    home. The average age of first-time mothers who gave birth at home was 30.1 years.

    Of babies born at home in 2006, all were liveborn. The mean birthweight of these liveborn

    babies was 3,687 grams (Table 3.34). The proportion of liveborn babies of low birthweight born

    at home was 0.8%, and the proportion of babies born at home that were preterm was 0.7%.

    <http://www.aihw.gov.au/publications/per/amb06/amb06.pdf

    In summary:
    280 078 total births in Australia in 2006
    2,091 fetal deaths
    Stillborn rate of 7.4 per 1000 births
    All 708 planned homebirths were liveborn.

    I take that to mean that 2,091 babies died in hospital, and none at home.

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    Bad journalism, no presentation of facts and a strong Bias.

    If they had have dropped Paris Hilton's name in there a few times, I would have thought I was reading New Idea.


    Bravo! Here's to another sensationalised article by the Australian media!

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    I think the most upsetting thing about this article is the open ridicule of the woman's account of her c/s, and the fact that she felt violated by her birth trauma. Regardless of your beliefs on home birth, how dare anyone make fun of someone's traumatic experience? While I find it hard to excuse poor professionalism from a journalist by not presenting fact, just hype, I find it completely impossible to excuse the outright sarcasm directed towards this woman's experience on a human level.

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