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Public hearing on Home Birth Safety Act scheduled for Jan. 29

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Posted: Monday, January 27, 2014 8:57 am

The Alabama Senate Judiciary Committee has scheduled a Public Hearing for SB 99, The Home Birth Safety Act to take place in the state House on Jan. 29 in Room 325 at 1 p.m, with the date, time and location subject to legislative updates.

The Home Birth Safety Act is sponsored by Senator Paul Bussman (R-Cullman) and supported by the Alabama Birth Coalition.

SB 99, and its companion bill, HB 67 sponsored by Representative Mike Ball (R-Madison), would enable Alabama families choosing home birth to receive care from Certified Professional Midwives (CPMS), without their midwives risking prosecution for attending their births. 

Alabama law currently allows families to choose home birth as long as their home births are not attended by any professional care provider. Any midwife who attends an Alabama home birth risks prosecution. 

"Alabama legislators have a responsibility to make home births the safest possible," says Lisa Clark, long-time Alabama Birth Coalition supporter. "As parents, we are asking that our babies and mothers be given access to the same safe, affordable, culturally respectful care that mothers and babies in other states benefit from."

CPMs are specifically trained to attend home births, and are prepared to facilitate life-saving first response in the event of a complication arising at home.

In other states, CPMs work with medical professionals to ensure the highest quality of home birth care. Alabama is one of only eight states which prosecute CPMs who attend out-of-hospital births. 

The Alabama Birth Coalition is a non-profit, grassroots, all-volunteer organization made up of Alabama families. The organization has introduced bills to increase access to CPMs since 2007.

For more information on the Alabama Birth Coalition and The Home Birth Safety Act, visit: http://www.alabamabirthcoalition.org/. To find people in Lee County who support the Alabama Birth Coalition, find the Lee County Supporters of Alabama Birth Coalition on Facebook.

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4 comments:

  • MamaNatural posted at 11:42 am on Wed, Jan 29, 2014.

    MamaNatural Posts: 1

    Thank you so much for covering this story! As a home birthing mom in Alabama, access to midwives who can operate legally is so important to me. We chose home birth because it is proven to be at least as safe as hospital birth for low risk pregnancies, and the comfort and intimacy of birthing at home cannot be beat.
    I will be attending the hearing and vote for the bill next week, so exciting!

     
  • AshevilleMama posted at 11:34 am on Tue, Jan 28, 2014.

    AshevilleMama Posts: 1

    So glad to see coverage of this topic. I'm an AU grad living in NC and I've had all 5 of my children at home. Women choose home birth for many reasons and for my family it was about safety, normalcy, & connection. Women are looking for qualified midwives to provide care for home births. The CPM is trained and credentialed specifically in attending home births, no other profession can say that. Lifting the ban on CPMs practice ensures women choosing home births have legal, trained providers, which will improve access to care, communication with other providers if needed, and accountability. I look forward to seeing a follow up story on the outcome of this bill.

     
  • Delice posted at 4:21 pm on Mon, Jan 27, 2014.

    Delice Posts: 1

    THANK YOU for covering this!! I am an Alabama mama who drove to TN to deliver my second baby in a home, because of the laws restricting midwives from attending home births here in Alabama. It was worth every mile, but how amazing would it be to be able to have a safe home birth in my own home?

     
  • juliettetacon posted at 10:33 am on Mon, Jan 27, 2014.

    juliettetacon Posts: 1

    Thank you for reporting on this issue. Alabama mothers deserve Alabama midwives!

     

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