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  • Statistics show homebirth safety for low risk women with adequate prenatal care, and a qualified birth attendant.
  • Labor can progress naturally, without unnecessary interventions.
  • Women can eat, drink, walk, make noises, shower, bathe, etc. 
  • Cost of home birth is less than hospital.
  • Continuous care given by a midwife throughout labor, birth and postpartum.
  • Women are encouraged and supported while they maintain control of their birth experience.
  • Care-givers establish a trusting relationship with the birthing family. 
  • Mother/baby bonding is enhanced and breastfeeding is supported.


  • Client must assume a greater responsibility for their own health.
  • Negative judgments and lack of support from people that view hospital birth as socially correct.
  • Cesareans, forceps and anesthetics are not readily available requiring transport if necessary.
  • 24 hour maternity nursing care is usually unavailable. 


  • Facility is only provided for pregnancy and birth events. 
  • Offers more personalized care than most hospitals.
  • Pregnancy is considered a natural and healthy process in a birth center.
  • During pregnancy, women are encouraged to take charge of their own health.
  • Greater parental control, freedom to move and eat, and the choice of birthing positions.
  • Lower cesarean and forcep rates than hospitals. 
  • Women are allowed to return home within hours.

  • Screening process eliminates many healthy mothers, i.e., VBAC; mothers over 35, etc.
  • Mother must travel to center and labor away from home environment.
  • Many centers have protocols requiring transport to hospital for prolonged labor, etc.
  • Many communities do not have birth centers.
  • Some mothers feel safest laboring in a hospital. 
  • Emergency cesarean is readily available in hospital.
  • In some cases it is the safest environment for the high risk mother or baby.
  • Immediate pediatric care for newborn needing medical care. 
  • 24 hour maternity nursing care is available.

  • Parents do not have control of their birth. 
  • Less privacy and increase of fear in some women.
  • The father is less likely to be actively involved during labor and birth.
  • Routine separation of the mother and baby is almost unavoidable.
  • Birth is managed by people trained in pathology, not normal birth.
  • Risk of having an unnecessary cesarean or episiotomy is higher.
  • Risk of infection or iatrogenic complications to mother and baby is increased.
  • Proper nourishment during labor and adequate rest is limited due to hospital protocols.
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