30 July 2010

take that, lame study on home birth dangers!

Home birth has been in the media a lot lately due to a recent study saying that although home birth is safe for low-risk moms, babies born at home had a 3x greater mortality rate. But how did they get that number? The American College of Nurse-Midwives' (ACNM response is great at picking apart the findings...bottom-line, it was a poorly done compilation.

In part, ACNM president, Holly Powell Kennedy, CNM, PhD, FACNM, FAAN, says the study is flawed because,
They included studies that did not distinguish between planned and unplanned home births. For example, if you had planned a hospital birth, but your labor progressed so quickly that you gave birth before you even made it to the hospital, then you wouldn’t have had a skilled attendant or necessary resources present.

In contrast, a planned home birth means that the woman and her health care provider have determined she is healthy, at low risk for complications, and has the necessary resources in place for a safe birth. By combining the two types of home births, the findings are limited.

Second, a meta-analysis is a way of combining the results of many studies. But in this case, there seems to be no clear reason as to which studies they included versus those they excluded. In fact, they actually did not include the best and by far largest study that's been done—which did not find a higher neonatal mortality rate.

1 comment:

Patty "Wilson" P said...

Such a great post. Always thought that Doulas where such great supports for moms