Home Birth Safety

If you are experiencing a healthy low risk pregnancy, birth is generally very safe for both you and your baby regardless of the setting. Midwives are highly skilled, regulated health care professionals. They are also the only primary care providers who receive specific education and training to attend out-of-hospital births in Ontario. They monitor for complications and are well integrated into the healthcare system. These are all important factors when considering the safety of a home birth.

What does the research say about the safety of planned home births?

Canadian research shows that midwifery clients with a low risk of complications who plan a home birth often experience fewer complications than those at low risk of complications who plan a hospital birth.

A review of four research studies that examined the records of more than 45 000 births in Ontario and British Columbia found that newborn health outcomes for both groups were similar, whether their birth was planned for home or in a hospital. In these Canadian studies, planned home birth was also found to reduce interventions like C-section by up to 30% and the need for drugs to speed up labour by as much as 40%.

The research considers planned place of birth rather than actual birth place so that outcomes, good or bad, are associated with the intended birth place.  For example, if you are planning a home birth but are required to go the hospital for a c-section the outcome would be associated with the home because this is where you planned to give birth.

Learn more about what the research says regarding safety if this is your first birth or if you have given birth before.

And Watch this video to see how Rebeka decided to plan a home birth with midwives.