Mod Midwives: The Backup Plan

While 85-90% of home births go forward as planned, somewhere between 10-15% will require transport during or after labor. So, it is important to have a backup plan. (Note: the movie Gina referenced does not, sadly, feature Matthew McConaughey, nor is it about having a backup marriage after 40.)

Many families have initial questions about what emergency situations would look like, especially when they are deciding whether or not to plan a home birth. We strongly believe that being prepared for the possibility of transport is an important part of care–and, as is most likely, if we don’t transport there’s nothing lost. But, if unprepared, a transport could leave a family feeling shaken and upset.

In this week’s podcast, we discuss transports: how do we create an emergency plan, when might we recommend one, and what it might look like. We discuss emergent vs. non-emergent situations and how each of those tends to unfold. We talk about appropriate risk assessment and the importance of having good interprofessional relationships with doctors and hospitals in order to keep transports safe and accessible. Because, ultimately, when midwives are able to integrate into the system as seamlessly as possible, we have the best possible outcomes. See the article we referenced by Saraswathi Vedem et al. for more information. And you can read more about Gina’s graduate work in our previous blog post.

So, though it is not something any community birthing family may want to plan for, or even really want to think about, it is a critical element of your care. Being prepared for a transfer of care will make the process less stressful should it happen–and it probably won’t.