No difference in mortality rates between home births and hospital

There is no evidence of an additional risk of death for babies born as a result of planned home births if their mothers are at low risk of complications, according to a study.

Photograph: istockphoto
Photograph: istockphoto

Researchers say their findings in BJOG: International Journal of Obestetrics and Gynaecology challenges claims made about the safety of planned home birth published in a previous article of the journal.

It said that the safety of home birth in England and Wales was decreasing, contrary to the trend for births overall, and that the risk was significantly higher for babies whose mothers planned a home birth but ended up transferring to hospital.

The new analysis was led by NCT researchers in collaboration with colleagues from epidemiology, midwifery and obstetrics.

Leading author Gill Gyte said: ‘There is no conclusive evidence of an additional risk of death for babies born as a result of planned home births if their mothers are at low risk of complications.

‘There is still no evidence of any difference in mortality between planned home birth and planned hospital birth.’

neil.durham@haymarket.com

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