Brilliant series on the dangers of homebirth

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Finally, a mainstream journalist has tackled the issue of homebirth and found multiple stores of neonatal death and injury.

Louise Knott Ahern has written a brilliant series of articles about The Greenhouse Birth Center, a center that has had an appalling neonatal death rate of 7/1000 during its years of operation. Keep in mind that the CDC reports that the neonatal death rate for low risk white women at term who deliver in a hospital is 0.4/1000. That means that the neonatal death rate at The Greenhouse Birth Center is more than 1300% higher than expected! Were any patients advised of that death rate? Of course not!

How, exactly, can women make an informed decision about the Greenhouse Birth Center if they don’t have this most important piece of information. They can’t, obviously, and that’s just how homebirth midwives and supporters like it.

Homebirth midwives have been engaged in a systematic attempt bury the stories of the appalling rate of neonatal deaths at homebirth. The Board of Direct Entry Midwifery refuses to release the death rate of homebirth in Oregon. The homebirth midwives of Colorado have stopped reporting the number of deaths at homebirth as required by state law after a four year stretch of very high and RISING rates of neonatal death. The homebirth midwives of North Carolina had no less than 5 neonatal deaths in 2011 (as reported in the media) and possibly more that were not reported.

And, of course, the Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA), the group that represents homebirth midwives, REFUSES to release the death rate of the 24,000 planned homebirths in their database because the number is appallingly high.

Homebirth kills babies. Even homebirth midwives know it, but they are doing everything in their power to make sure that American women do not find out.

Bravo to Ms. Ahern for pulling back the curtain on this terrible secret.

Homebirth midwives (Certified Professional Midwives or CPMs) are unfit to practice. They lack the education and training required of ALL other midwives in the first world. They are not eligible for licensure in the UK, the Netherlands, Australia and other countries that publicly support and promote homebirth. In fact, they aren’t even required to have a high school diploma!

CPMs have embarked on an effort to obtain licensing (so they can obtain insurance reimbursement) in all 50 states. Not only shouldn’t they receive state licenses, but the CPM credential should be abolished. It is a pretend “credential” made up by uneducated women to award to themselves in an effort to fool unsuspecting consumers. Canada abolished the CPM several years ago. It is time for the US to do the same.

Kudos to Sara and Jarad Snyder whose brave decision to sue The Greenhouse Birth Center in the wake of the preventable death of their son Magnus was the spur for this expose. Nothing can lessen the tragedy that Magnus’ death represents, but the Snyders’ efforts to uncover the truth and share it with others in order to prevent further tragedies is a loving memorial.