January 13, 2015 – Childbirth Connection programs at the National Partnership for Women & Families released a major new report, Hormonal Physiology of Childbearing: Evidence and Implications for Women, Babies, and Maternity Care by Sarah J. Buckley. This comprehensive report examines the science on the hormonal physiology of childbearing and its implications for women, babies and maternity care. The report is accompanied by resources for both women and clinicians.
June 23, 2014 – The Lancet has published a series comprised of four international studies on midwifery. Developed by a multidisciplinary group of academics, researchers, women and child health advocates, clinicians and policy-makers, the collaborative approach to this series has resulted in the creation of a framework for quality maternal and newborn care.
With women and infants at the center of this framework and midwifery as a key component to its success, the findings of this series support a shift to a whole-system approach that provides quality care for all. In addition to presenting health practitioners and decision-makers with realistic, achievable, sustainable, and evidence-based strategies, the papers address current key issues and challenges affecting the provision of such care.
With the overall goal of positively impacting mothers and babies, it is hoped that the recommendations from this series will be tailored to meet the unique needs of individual communities and countries.
We are thrilled to see that three Home Birth Summit delegates, including Eugene Declercq, Holly Kennedy and Jane Sandall, are key contributors to this important series.
The executive summary can be viewed by clicking here.
March 2014 – A new data brief issued by the National Center for Health Statistics reveals that the number of births at home and in birth centers in the United States continues to increase. The increase was greatest for non-Hispanic white women and in the Northwest. The risk profile of out of hospital births has also declined significantly over the period, which the report attributes to “appropriate selection of candidates” to give birth at home or birth center. Although the total number of out-of-hospital births is still small at 1.36%, the report predicts that if the upward trend continues it could impact maternity care infrastructure needs and costs. Refer to the CDC web site for a more detailed summary and the full report: Trends in Out-of-Hospital Births in the United States, 1990–2012.
January 30, 2014 – Summit delegates Melissa Cheyney and Saraswathi Vedam are two of the authors on this landmark study. The study reviewed the births of nearly 17,000 women and found that, among low-risk women, planned home births result in low rates of birth interventions without an increase in adverse outcomes for mothers and newborns. Please visit the MANA website for additional information.
There are two articles and publisher the Journal of Midwifery and Women’s Health has very generously agreed to provide free online access to the full content of both articles for this year (2014).
Cheyney M, Bovbjerg M, Everson C, Gordon W, Hannibal D, & Vedam S. Outcomes of care for 16,984 planned home births in the United States: The Midwives Alliance of North America Statistics Project, 2004-2009.
Cheyney M, Bovbjerg M, Everson C, Gordon W, Hannibal D, & Vedam S. Development and validation of a national data registry for midwife-led births: The Midwives Alliance of North America Statistics Project 2.0 dataset.
September 27, 2013 – A new analysis of national birth certificate data from 2004 to 2010 published in the American College of Nurse-Midwives’ journal, Journal of Midwifery & Women’s Health, reveals that women are choosing midwife-led, out-of-hospital births at an increasing rate in the United States. Review the abstract here.
September 23, 2013 – The Institute of Medicine Committee on Research Issues in the Assessment of Birth Settings held a public workshop on March 6-7, 2013 to review updates to the 1982 IOM-NRC report Research Issues in the Assessment of Birth Settings.
The workshop feature invited presentations and discussions intended to highlight research findings that advance our understanding of the effects, on maternal labor, clinical and other birth procedures, and birth outcomes, of maternal care services in different types of birth settings, including conventional hospital labor and delivery wards, alternative birth settings that may be hospital-affiliated or free-standing, and home births. Workshop topics considered research on different organizational models of care delivery, workforce requirements, patient and provider satisfaction levels, and birth outcomes. The workshop also included topics intended to identify key data sets and relevant research literatures that may inform a future ad hoc consensus study to address these concerns.
Speakers included Home Birth Consensus Summit delegates Elizabeth Armstrong, Bill Barth, Debra Bingham, Laurie Cawthon, Zsakeba Henderson, Marian MacDorman, Brynne Potter, Carol Sakala, Jane Sandall and Kristi Watterberg. Agenda, videos and presentations from all presenters can be found on the IOM page for the workshop.
A summary from the workshop has been released and can be read in its entireity online at the link following:
August 22, 2013 – The Cochrane Pregnancy and Childbirth Group conducted a systematic review of 13 trials involving 16,242 women comparing women whose prenatal and childbirth care was led by a midwife to those whose care is led by a physician or shared among disciplines and found that midwife-led care has better outcomes. Refer to the Cochrane Library for the full article.
January 30, 2013 – The American Association of Birth Centers conducted a study over 3 years (2007-2010) with 79 midwifery-led birth centers in 33 states participating. Findings were positive for the safety of birth center care and potential cost savings for maternity care. View the full results of The National Birth Center Study II, visit the Journal of Midwifery & Women’s Health web site: www.jmwh.org.