Over the last five years Dr. Stuart Fischbein, a Southern California obstetrician, has attended 135 home births. These deliveries included VBACs, vaginal breech and vaginal twin deliveries.
A summary of these births has been recently published.
Here are some highlights along with a few additional resources I compiled where you can learn more.
On patient selection:
“This model was not limited by strict protocols and allowed for guidelines to be merely guidelines. Women over 35, VBAC, breech and twin pregnancies were not excluded from this series simply because those labels existed. Each client was evaluated on her own merits and the comfort of the practitioner.”
On informed choice and the limitations of hospital birth:
“Home birth is not for everyone but informed choice is. The patronizing statement, “home delivery is for pizza”, is unprofessional and has no place in the legitimate discussion. Some suggest making hospital birth more homelike. While this may be a beginning and deserves investigation, it fails to recognize the difficult balance between honoring normal undisturbed mammalian birth and the reality of the hospital model’s legal and economic concerns and policies.”
On collaborative care:
“Pregnant women deserve to know that midwifery style care, both in and out of hospital, is a reasonable choice. A collaborative model between obstetrician and midwife can provide better results than what is occurring today.”
On lost skills:
“It would be wise to put the constructive energy of our profession towards the training of future practitioners in the skills that make obstetricians truly specialists such as breech, twin and operative vaginal deliveries.”
On the growth of home birth:
“Home birth will continue to grow as educated women realize that the current hospital model has many flaws.”
On our ethical obligation to provide a smooth home to hospital transfer:
“Cooperation, respect and smooth transition from home to hospital honors the pregnant woman and is our ethical obligation.”
California Healthcare Foundation. (2014, Nov). A Tale of Two Births: High- and Low-Performing Hospitals on Maternity Measures in California. Retrieved from California Healthcare Foundation: http://www.chcf.org/publications/2014/11/tale-two-births
Fischbein SJ (2015) “Home Birth” with an Obstetrician: A Series of 135 Out of Hospital Births. Obstet Gynecol Int J 2(4): 00046. DOI: 10.15406/ogij.2015.02.00046. Retrieved from Obstetrics & Gynecology International Journal: http://medcraveonline.com/OGIJ/OGIJ-02-00046.pdf
Johnson, N. (2010, Sept 11). For-profit hospitals performing more C-sections. Retrieved from California Watch: http://californiawatch.org/health-and-welfare/profit-hospitals-performing-more-c-sections-4069
Kennedy, M. (Director). (2015). Heads Up! The Disappearing Art of Vaginal Breech Delivery [Motion Picture]. Retrieved from http://www.informedpregnancy.com/#!heads-up/cef1
Klagholz, J., & Strunk, A. (2012). Overview of the 2012 ACOG Survey on Professional Liability. Retrieved from The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists: http://www.acog.org/-/media/Departments/Professional-Liability/2012PLSurveyNational.pdf