8 responses to “Homebirth Underground”

  1. Belinda

    This must be the article in the paper my husband read. He told me about it today and my response was it won’t happen BUT I am terrified of being forced to go to hospital beacause my husband won’t ‘break the law’ by having an essentially illegal homebirth!I don’t know where to turn…. any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  2. ries

    part of me just cannot really believe this is happening, but it is…. can we stop the ball??? the idea of going into hospital is, to me… a bit like volunteering for gang rape when 9 months pregnant. no I’m not exagerating. that is how it felt.(been there three times) home birth is like making love to your partner and new child is welcomed into both your arms.(been there twice). Now that may be graphic, and I know many women are very satisfied with the medical approach to birth, if only the first time… and have no complaints with the cascade of interventions imposed from the moment you arrive. even if i am ‘informed’ and have my ‘birthplan’, i just do not feel like fighting when in labour with the ‘obstetric nurse’ who might think she is in control!
    A Media push, about the irrationality of Making home birth attendants “illegal”,(as an attention grabber) might shame the government into action? I do not think the midwives can push this without getting canned/abused again with the self-interest line, but maybe it really is time for women to vote with their voices and feet.
    could we have a meeting of women who are passionate about home birth, with Lisa and other midwives as speakers, and invite ‘today tonight’ or similar??? Flood the media in every state through every contact we have, using all the independant midwives that are affected, their clients, and fight tooth and nail at last? If they can fight so passively at the college for women, we can fight agressively for ourselves. I am sick of the ‘risky’ label, when I know the real risks of hospital birth. Lets get those cochrane articles out, get comments from leading members of the obstetric and hospital/govt community to respond word for word why they deny informed choice to women about maternity services. let’s get the stats from the home birthing projects that have existed,bring them out also. Mutual community ran their trial of home birthing payments to independant midwives, and it was deemed a total success (from the mouth of the agent who ran it)… it has been scrapped for lack of infrastucture to support so few women wanting it…. bulderdash, they thought that way about chiro and natropathy too 20years ago. if home birthing became widely supported,expected and requested, of course they would refund it, and midwives might even get provider no’s also! I’d like to try every avenue to make home birthing a true option for every women, without condemnation and scare mongering. How can I help?
    last week, I was in despair and thought that, well at least my 6th baby will make it in before 2010… but now I am just furious that we are returning to the early 1900′s where only the Dr knew best… and every woman after me is denied home maternity care, including my daughters…. come on girls, lets make some MORE noise than ever before. after all, could it get any worse?

  3. Milie

    Hi Lisa,

    I might have missed one point (having been in Australia for only 2 years): what would happen to parents who choose homebirth from July 2010 if that’s illegal?

    Would they have to pay a fine if anyone discover their plans?

    If anything goes wrong with bubby or Mummy, would the parents/the father go to jail for having chosen the illegal way?

    As a consumer, at this stage, I don’t see what would be the difference, apart from the fact that it would be harder to find midwives doing homebirths.

    Thanks Lisa.

    Milie from Sydney

  4. Grant Horsfall

    Looks like you may need to get geared up for a sudden increase in demand for a mobile knitting tutoring service in mid 2010.

    This would probably benefit from a number of home visits over say about a nine month period, perhaps with the option of a knit-in near the end of the knitting support service period.

    To encourage confidence in developing knitting skills, perhaps an unexpected visit could be agreed to at the onset. If the woman happened to be in labour at the time you could perhaps sit quietly in the corner & do some knitting.

    PS: Hopefully the next step will not be going after parents on the basis of "endangering" their unborn or new-born by willfully going against the arbitrary changes.


  5. Lisa Barrett

    Hi there, there would be no consequences for the parents just the midwife who would have a fine and up to 2 years in prison.

  6. Milie

    Thanks Lisa for your reply.

    As a consumer, I feel very concerned by this issue – I’m planning a home birth in June for our first child with an independent midwife (and I’m passionate about home birth in general). What would happen if we want more children born at home? Go back to my country, France? At least independent miwdives have the legal right to assist home births over there, but it’s getting harder to find one. And at the moment it’s the only alternative for women who don’t need/want the hospital over there. Midwives are pushing hard to have birth centres created outside hospitals managed by themselves, when obs are just starting to create “physiological units” within hospitals managed by themselves and midwives to keep the control, and skip home birth practice…

    Anyway. It does not provide any solution for Australian independent midwives, consumers and babies!

    Can’t wait to meet our midwife next week to talk about this with her.

    Keep the good work Lisa ;-0

  7. Esther

    What about unassisted homebirth? Is that legal in Australia? I'm in Victoria and expecting my 5th child in June, so far I haven't been able to find a midwife to attend me, so I'm thinking to try unassisted, but if I do that what's the procedure after baby is here – do I need to find a Doctor or midwife to check the baby before registration or can I just do that myself by getting the correct paperwork? My first 4 were all hospital births and so I guess that took care of a lot of the things they do straight after birth – vitamin K and Hep B immunisation, forms for registration etc. I'm just not quite sure how to proceed here and since I've stopped seeing my Doc and am searching for a midwife I have no-one I can ask right now. Probably should have done this research before I stopped the Doc visits *sigh*

  8. Lisa Barrett

    Sorry to hear you can't find a midwife. have you looked at http://www.joyousbirth.info there is lots of great information there on both midwives and on freebirth. There are good forums with discussion on both too. Good luck.