In the last two weeks, two studies were released on the topic of home birth safety. And that's where the similarities end. The studies' reports completely oppose each other -- the Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA) study states that "among low-risk women, planned home births result in low rates of interventions without an increase in adverse outcomes for mothers and babies," and the study from the New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center showed that "patients [who] delivered babies at home by midwives had a roughly four times higher risk of neonatal deaths than babies delivered in the hospital by midwives."
How can it be that two studies evaluating the same thing reported results that are so vastly different? Well, the answer is lies in how the studies were created and reported. As a family working to evaluate your options and preferences for place of birth, it's important that you read both studies, as well as what both the critics and proponents have to say, and then decide for yourself the best option for you and your family. Below are links to the original studies and subsequent reviews: