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Home or hospital: where is the safest place to have a baby?

Three mothers talk about choosing where to have their baby.

Laura Parker decided to have a home birth for her second baby, Samantha Lyons opted for a doctor-led hospital unit, and Annette Dixon choose a midwife-led unit.

A landmark study, published in the British Medical Journal, suggests that for first-time mothers a home birth carries a higher risk for babies.

However, the chance of harm to the baby is still under 1%, the study of almost 65,000 births in England found.

For a second birth there was no difference in the risk to babies between home, a midwife-led unit or a doctor-led hospital unit.

Midwife-led care was in general much more likely to lead to a natural birth.

  • 25 Nov 2011
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