Midwife-led care less safe, review reveals

[UPDATE: This story has been corrected to amend an error in the second paragraph]

Midwife-led maternity care is less safe than medical-led care, according to a review of the New Zealand model, where four out of five women have a midwife as their lead maternity carer.

The retrospective review of outcomes in 244,047 pregnancies between 2008 and 2012 found that compared with midwife-led care , medical-led births were associated with a substantially lower risk of:

  • low Apgar scores (48% lower) 
  • birth-related asphyxia (55% lower),
  • neonatal