Frequently Asked Questions of Morningstar Midwifery, Homebirth, Waterbirth, Well Woman Care, Belfast, MaineFrequently Asked Questions of Morningstar Midwifery, Homebirth, Waterbirth, Well Woman Care, Belfast, Maine

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Frequently Asked Questions of Morningstar Midwifery, Homebirth, Waterbirth, Well Woman Care, Belfast, Maine

Yes. Giving birth at home is as safe as giving birth in any other setting. Controlled studies have shown that infant mortality is equivalent for home and hospital births. What is different is the dramatically lower rate of medical interventions such as induction, episiotomy, vacuum extraction, and cesarean section in the homebirth group. In the year 2006, the national cesarean rate was 30.9%. The cesarean rate for women planning to birth at home was 3.7%. To see statistics on the safety of homebirth, read the results of the largest prospective study ever done about homebirth, the CPM2000 study, which was published in the British Medical Journal in 2005.

Click here to read the results of the CPM2000 study

Click here to see the newest MANA Statistics Dataset, published in 2014

Midwives carry lots of bags to births! We bring equipment to monitor you and your babyís vitals during labor, such as a doppler, blood pressure cuff, stethoscope, etc. We always carry oxygen and resuscitation equipment, and keep current certification in neonatal resuscitation and adult CPR. We carry herbs and homeopathics, as well as medications to treat postpartum hemorrhage. We carry anesthetic and materials for suturing. As well, we carry all the equipment and medications for newborn care, should they be necessary. We also bring years of acquired midwifery skills, patience, and a good sense of humor.

Yes. We have four water tubs with heaters and pumps that are available for rent. The majority of babies that we help with are born into water, although some women prefer to birth on land.

Certified Professional Midwives are nationally credentialed midwives trained specifically to attend homebirths. Their training, education and credential prepares them to provide comprehensive prenatal care and education, guide labor and birth in the home setting, address complications, and care for newborns and new mothers. CPMs are experts in normal pregnancy and birth.

Some insurance companies pay for homebirth services. Others will pay only for prenatal and postpartum care with CPMs but will not reimburse for the actual birth. We can provide receipts to your insurance company to help you recover payment for services. MaineCare does not pay for services provided by CPMs. However, MaineCare and all private insurances cover labwork fees, the cost of an ultrasound should you have one during your pregnancy, and most other medical screenings.

On occasion, it is more appropriate for a woman to be in the hospital to give birth. Most often, this happens after a long labor during which the mother has gotten tired and is no longer having effective contractions, or no longer making progress. If for some reason we decide together that it is advisable to go to the hospital, we would call ahead to tell them you were coming, and then stay with you throughout your transport and care in the hospital. We would share the records of your care with us, and act as your support during your birth. We usually provide your postpartum care after you have returned home.

Yes. Often, women who have had a previous Cesarean birth would like to give birth vaginally. Because of limited options in the hospital setting, many women are coming to homebirth in order to have the chance for a VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean). During an initial interview, we will discuss the risks and benefits of VBAC, options in Maine for VBAC attended births, and whether you are a good candidate for a home VBAC. We attend many successful VBAC births each year!

Although this happens VERY rarely (about once every few years), we do always carry two sets of equipment to each birth, so that in the event of another birth occurring at the same time, one of the midwives would leave to attend the other birth. We would also call in an assistant midwife so that there would be two trained professionals at each birth. We have an intimate practice and want to be at every clientís birth.

Yes, we often include siblings at birth. We get to know your child(ren) during your prenatal care. We would recommend books and movies to help them be prepared. We suggest that you invite a friend or relative who is comfortable with your birth plans to be there just for your other child(ren). Children come and go according to their own comfort level, and are usually thrilled to have been a part of their siblingís birthday!

Morningstar offers a free interview/consultation. This appointment lasts 1 1/4 hours. Some couples come early in pregnancy, while others come pre-conception. This is an opportunity to ask all your questions about homebirth, and to meet us to see if it feels like a good philosophy and personality fit for you. Birth is an intimate experience, and itís important to choose practitioners you feel very comfortable with.