Melbourne Doula

Welcome to 'Melbourne Doula', the place where I share what birth work is teaching is me, and what I am learning from the wonderful families who have invited me to share this most special season of their lives. Here you will find information about me and the doula services I provide, birth stories from remarkable women and their loved ones, as well as all kinds of resources to enrich your own journey of discovery. And welcome also to BLISSFUL HERBS, the home of beautiful herbal teas and bath herbs to support wellness through every season of life.

Report from Coroner Reimer re. the case concerning midwife Jillian Delaile

Report from Coroner Reimer re. the case concerning midwife Jillian Delaile
June 2009

Research shows the rate of infant deaths for homebirth is the same or slightly less than the rate of infant deaths for similar low-risk women who plan hospital births.

This concerns the sad case of a baby who did die in the process of being born at home, despite the midwife's efforts to resuscitate and transfer the baby.

Coroner Reimer's comments in the opening paragraphs make some compelling points:

"At the outset, it should be noted that certain pronouncements of the Federal Government of late might have a vast effect on the viability of private practitioner midwives and indeed the future of the practice of homebirthing altogether.

It seems that it is intended to legislate to make it unlawful for homebirths to take place attended by midwives, unless they are fully covered for professional negligence. It has been forecast that no insurers will be prepared to issue such policies. It seems to follow that the practice itself, by this back-door method, could in itself become unlawful.

Obviously this could have disastrous ramifications. It might have the effect of driving the practice of homebirthing "underground", which would be a dangerous outcome. History has shown that there will always be a small group of expectant mothers (and fathers for that matter) who will want to give birth in their home.

The representatives of the parents in their submission (and indeed the mother in a separate letter to the Coroner), despite the disastrous experience of this birth, argue that it is the inherent right of a mother to determine how and where she should give birth and birthing at home should be an available option. Not suprisingly the midwife's representatives also press these sentiments on the Court. It is a practice that will not go away and it is to be hoped that the Legislators take great care in drafting any proposed laws in this regard."

No comments: