GRN: How Consumers Can Help Birth Centers Become A Reality for Every Community
The National Birth Center Study II
While the whole nation has been watching the cesarean section rate and cost of maternity care climb ever-higher,
midwife-led birth centers have been providing low-risk women with a
safe, low-cost model of care with excellent outcomes and a c-section
rate orders of magnitude lower than the national average.
84% of women who started labor at the birth center, had their babies at the birth center.
94% of women had vaginal births (whether they remained at the birth
center or transferred to a hospital), with no evidence of compromised
outcomes for babies. (That is, only 6% of women who started labor at a birth center had a cesarean birth.)
The national average is 32.8%. According to the authors, the national
c-section rate for low-risk women comparable to this sample is 27%.
The fetal and neonatal death rate was extremely low and comparable to
what has been reported in other studies of low-risk populations.
Why is this study important for consumers to know about?
The overall number of birth centers has been growing over the last ten
years. However, if you Google the phrase, “birth center closing,” you
will see story after story of communities around the country despairing
as their birth centers were closing their doors for all sorts of
In some states, the regulations for birth centers represent barriers to
getting them started. In others, the financial or physician back-up
structure was not sustainable. The loss of birth centers leaves significant gaps in the continuum of care options for women, leaving them to choose care that is not optimally suited to their situation.
The solution to lowering the cesarean section rate and the astronomical
maternity care costs in this country will be multifaceted, for sure.
Today we have been given empirical evidence that support for birth
centers, with their low-cost and excellent outcomes, should be a
substantial piece of the equation.
What Can You Do?
If you already have a birth center in your community:
Support it! Send them love today on Facebook, host a fundraiser, become their champion.
SHARE WITH OTHERS IN YOUR AREA!
Feel free to forward and share on facebook with friends, family and colleagues
SEND US NEWS!
If you find news, resources, or other valuable information that you
think should be posted on the Grassroots Network, please send it to
info@cfmidwifery. org... with "For the grassroots network" in the
subject line. We will definitely consider using them!
Are you interested in volunteering with some dynamic women in a supportive environment?
Help CfM promote the Midwives Model of Care!
We have many ways to get more involved.
Get in touch with us!