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The commonalities and differences in health professionals' views on home birth in Tasmania, Australia: A qualitative study


Hoang, H and Le, Q and Kilpatrick, SI and Jona, M and Fernando, N, The commonalities and differences in health professionals' views on home birth in Tasmania, Australia: A qualitative study, Women and Birth, 26, (1) pp. 55-59. ISSN 1871-5192 (2013) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright Statement

Copyright 2012 Elsevier Australia

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.wombi.2012.03.002


Objectives: Home birth has attracted great controversy in the current context. There is a need for the public and health professionals to understand why maternity care providers have such different views on home birth, why they debate, what divides them into two opposite sides and if they have anything in common. Method: A qualitative study involving twenty maternity health providers in Tasmania was conducted. It used semi-structured interview which included closed and open-ended questions to provide opportunities for exploring emerging insights from the voices of the participants. Findings: Health practitioners who support home birth do so for three reasons. Firstly, women have the right to choose the place of birth. Secondly, home birth may be more cost effective compared to hospital birth. Thirdly, if home birth is not supported, some women might choose to have a free birth. Those who opposed home birth argue that complications could occur at childbirth and the transfer time is critical for women’s and babies’ safety. These differences in opinions can be due to the differences in the training and philosophy of the maternity care providers. Despite the differing views on home births, health professionals share a common goal to protect the women and the newborns from unexpected situations during childbirth. Conclusion: This article provides some significant insights derived from the study of home birth from the maternity health professionals’ perspectives and could contribute to the enhancement of mutual understanding and collaboration of health professionals in their services to expectant mothers.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Home birth; Health professionals; Maternity services; Opinions; Tasmania; Australia
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Health services and systems
Research Field:Health services and systems not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Evaluation of health and support services
Objective Field:Evaluation of health and support services not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Hoang, H (Dr Ha Hoang)
UTAS Author:Le, Q (Dr Quynh Le)
UTAS Author:Kilpatrick, SI (Professor Sue Kilpatrick)
UTAS Author:Jona, M (Ms Madeleine Jona)
UTAS Author:Fernando, N (Ms Nidarshi Fernando)
ID Code:77495
Year Published:2013
Web of Science® Times Cited:3
Deposited By:UTAS Centre for Rural Health
Deposited On:2012-04-23
Last Modified:2014-05-29

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