Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Home births: Then and now

Date:
November 30, 2011
Source:
University of Cincinnati
Summary:
New history research examines trends in US home births in the 1970s and paints a portrait of home-birth activists of the era -- activists who represented a broad cross section of society.

A comparison of home-birth trends of the 1970s finds many similarities -- and some differences -- related to current trends in home births.

Related Articles


For instance, in the 1970s -- as now -- women opting to engage in home births tended to have higher levels of education. That's according to a 1978 survey by Home Oriented Maternity Experience (HOME) that was recently found by University of Cincinnati historian Wendy Kline in the archives of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG).

That survey showed that in the late 1970s, one third of the group's members participating in home births had a bachelor's, master's or doctoral degree. Fewer than one percent did not have a high school education.

Also, according to the 2,000 respondents to HOME's 1978 survey, 36 percent of women engaging in home births at the time were attended by physicians. That is a much higher percentage than is the case currently for mothers participating in home births. (In research by Eugene Declerq, Boston University School of Public Health, and Mairi Breen Rothman, Metro Area Midwives and Allied Services, it was found that about five percent of homebirths were attended by a physician in 2008.)

These comparisons are possible because of historical information found by UC's Kline, including "A Survey of Current Trends in Home Birth" by the founders HOME and published in 1979.

Kline is also conducting interviews with and has obtained historical documents from the founders of and the midwives first associated with HOME, a grass roots organization founded in 1974, to provide information and education related to home births.

Kline will present this research and related historical information as one of only nine international presenters invited to the "Communicating Reproduction" conference at Cambridge University Dec. 6-7.

The debate surrounding health, safety and home births rose to national prominence as recently as October 2011 during the Home Birth Consensus Summit in Virginia, held because of increasing interest in home births as an option for expectant mothers.

Overall, Kline's research of HOME and of ACOG counters the stereotypical view of the 1970s home-birth movement as countercultural and peopled by "hippies." In fact, the founders of HOME deliberately reached out to a broad cross section of women across the political and religious spectrum, including religious conservatives as well as those on the left of the political spectrum.

Said Kline, "In looking through the historical record, we find that many women involved in home births in the 1970s signed their names 'Mrs. Robert Smith' or 'Mrs. William Hoffman.' The movement included professionals, business people, farmers, laborers and artists. It defies simplistic categorization."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Cincinnati. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Cincinnati. "Home births: Then and now." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 November 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111130115820.htm>.
University of Cincinnati. (2011, November 30). Home births: Then and now. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 27, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111130115820.htm
University of Cincinnati. "Home births: Then and now." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111130115820.htm (accessed February 27, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, February 27, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

New FDA-Approved Diabetes Medicine Might Save Drugmaker

New FDA-Approved Diabetes Medicine Might Save Drugmaker

Newsy (Feb. 26, 2015) The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved new diabetes drug Toujeo on Wednesday, a move that might save French drugmaker Sanofi&apos;s profits. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Foods to Battle Stress

The Best Foods to Battle Stress

Buzz60 (Feb. 26, 2015) If you&apos;re dealing with anxiety, there are a few foods that can help. Krystin Goodwin (@krystingoodwin) has the best foods to tame stress. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
The 5 Best Tips to Look Younger Now

The 5 Best Tips to Look Younger Now

Buzz60 (Feb. 26, 2015) Life happens, and we all get older, but forget the pricey anti-aging products and plastic surgery. You can tweak your habits to turn back the hands of time. Krystin Goodwin (@krystingoodwin) has a few simple tips to help you look and feel younger. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sleeping Too Much Or Too Little Might Increase Stroke Risk

Sleeping Too Much Or Too Little Might Increase Stroke Risk

Newsy (Feb. 26, 2015) People who sleep more than eight hours per night are 45 percent more likely to have a stroke, according to a University of Cambridge study. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins