Our fantastic homebirth team are still here supporting our women and families during these unprecedented times. Whilst in some Trusts, homebirth services are suspended our BWC homebirth team are proud to have been able to continue the service safely throughout the pandemic.
The homebirth team are made up of eight midwives and six maternity support workers who cover a 24/7 homebirth service to the women and families in the South of Birmingham.
Dayana Wright, Homebirth Team Midwife, said: "Throughout the pandemic, we have experienced an increase in interest from families considering a homebirth with the team. Some families feel that being in the comfort of their own home for their antenatal and postnatal checks works out better for family life, since some schools, nurseries or childcare facilities have been closed and couples are working from home.”
For women having a straightforward pregnancy who are under midwife led care, home birth is an excellent option for most women, especially those having their second baby after a normal first delivery. Benefits include a reduction in infections and bleeding, less interventions, such as caesarean birth and an increased chance of successful breastfeeding. It also means that women can have their baby in a safe and familiar environment surrounded by their family.
The care received by Birmingham Women’s Homebirth Team means that all care and equipment is bought to the home and therefore there is no need to attend the hospital unless there is a problem.
Dyana Wright said: “The team is trained in dealing with emergencies in the home setting, with an ambulance response time of 7minutes. To date, we have not experienced any delays with response time from West Midlands Ambulance Service, however, we continue to receive regular updates due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The most common reasons for transfer to hospital during labour are for: slow or no progress during labour or request for further pain relief.”
“During the pandemic, we have been asking families to choose one person to be present with them during their labour at home, asked to wear a mask and access to hand washing. Some families dedicate another family member to be on standby for other children if the need for transfer to hospital arises.”
The team are also working hard to promote homebirth to women who are experiencing a straightforward pregnancy, and are holding twice monthly homebirth workshops. For families that are interested in finding out more about homebirth, please contact the homebirth team on firstname.lastname@example.org, call us on 0121 335 8098, speak to your community midwife and attend one of our workshops.