Aviva Romm, MD CPM has a new post about the safety of homebirth, entitled Home Birth: Why This Doctor Would Still Choose One.
In the post, Aviva waxes rhapsodic about the beauty of homebirth:
Having home births – and being a midwife – were congruent with how I lived: as close to nature in my lifestyle choices as possible. During labor I felt the most comfortable being in my home, walking on the golf course behind my house, squatting during contractions, and eating & drinking freely to maintain my energy and stamina. It was where I felt the safest and could take the path of least resistance to how I wanted to birth. I also knew I was making an educated decision based on extensive research into the history of birth in many cultures, and the evidence for obstetric practices at the time.
In fact, if she had to do it all over again, she would still have homebirths:
Now that I am a physician many women ask me if I would still have my babies at home.
My answer is unequivocally: “Absolutely.”
… [Y]ou might say, “Well that’s easy for you to say since you’re long past your childbearing years” and don’t have to make that choice …
Exactly! But there is a choice that is still available to Aviva, yet, as far as I can determine from her promotional literature, she didn’t make it.
Aviva could attend homebirths as an MD, back up local homebirth midwives, get privileges to admit her obstetric patients in transfer to local hospitals, and forge relationships with local obstetricians to perform needed C-sections on her patients, and care for her high risk patients.
Yet now that she could actually provide physician services for homebirths, she chooses not to do so.
So my question is this: Aviva, if homebirth is so safe, why don’t you attend them?
Could it be that you don’t attend homebirths as an MD because they aren’t really that safe at all? Could it be that you don’t want the liability concerns that attending homebirths would entail? Could it be that you don’t want to back up local homebirth midwives because you don’t want to be responsible for their screw-ups? Could it be that just like nearly all family practice and obstetric practitioners, you don’t want to put your career on the line just to help women have homebirths?
I don’t know your reasoning. Perhaps you feel that you want an easier lifestyle? Perhaps you prefer to cash in by practicing “functional medicine” on the worried well who can pay out of pocket. I don’t blame you. You probably have massive amounts of debt and a high profile, high profit practice is the best way to clear that debt.
But don’t you think it’s rather hypocritical to promote homebirth while refusing to attend homebirths?
I prefer to judge people by what they do, not what they say. And by refusing to attend homebirths as an MD, your actions speak far louder than your words.