Birthing outside hospital 'mostly a safe alternative'

But major Australian study flags concern over home birth for first-time mothers

Women with uncomplicated pregnancies are much more likely to have a normal labour and birth if they plan delivery at home or in a birth centre compared with hospital, a study of more than one million Australian births shows.

Home birth

The risk of early neonatal death and intrapartum stillbirth was slightly higher among home-birth babies compared with other settings, but this was not statistically significant.

There was a suggestion home births among primiparous women were associated with higher perinatal mortality than that for multiparous women, the researchers said.

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