Study marks home births as safe as hospital births

Research team of McMaster University has proven that pregnant women who plan for home birth do not have a greater chance of baby’s neonatal or perinatal death than women who give birth at the hospital.

The study draws attention to the growing preference of home birth by women belonging to well-resource countries. However, concerns about their safety still prevail. Eileen Hutton, Professor emeritus of obstetrics and gynecology has determined through the study that home birth does not involve greater risk in comparison to birth in hospital. Hutton is also the founding director of McMaster Midwifery Research Centre, in addition to being the lead author of the study.

The research has been termed as one of the first meta-analysis and systematic review to refer to peer-review protocol from previously published research. The team also used information data based on 21 studies published since 1990. The team also compared results based on home and hospital outcomes from New Zealand, Australia, Japan, Netherlands, England, Sweden, U.S and Canada.

The outcome of the study was compared with 500,000 intended home births to a close number of hospital intended birth in the eight countries.

The research studied several factors related to birth. Some of these included safety place of birth. The experts created report based on the risk of death and time of the birth or within the period of first four weeks of birth. Based on the results, it was concluded, that there is no clinically significant and statistically different evidence between hospital and home births.

“Our research provides much needed information to policy makers, care providers and women and their families when planning for birth,” according to Hutton.

The study has been published by The Lance’‘s EClinicalMedicine journal.