July 25, 2014 2:17 pm
Updated: July 26, 2014 11:38 am

Planning a home birth? Why you need to check credentials

CALGARY- Following two incidents that required police involvement, pregnant women planning a home birth are being reminded about the importance of checking credentials.

Alberta Health Services says two women in the Calgary area had births that involved birthing attendants who were not certified. AHS says that not only is that a concern from a health perspective, but there are also regulations in place about who can assist with labour or deliver a baby.

Those include registered physicians, midwives, nurses or emergency medical services staff.

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“They are regulated to actually provide any medical intervention or to treat or examine patients, and people who do that actually contravene the Health Professions Act,” explains Dr. Verna Yiu from AHS. “Anything can go wrong at the home…we’re just really recommending that if you do want a home birth, that you have somebody that is trained and regulated to be with you.”

Calgary’s Caitlin Dillman birthed both of her sons at home with the help of a midwife, and says she wouldn’t have had it any other way.

“Both babies were born in my living room in a Canadian Tire blow up pool,” she says. “As crazy as that sounds to so many people, it was incredible and I had 100 per cent positive experience because I felt so supported.”

Anyone considering a home birth is reminded to ensure their birth attendant has the proper training and certification.

Click on the following links for more information:

  • For a list of registered midwives in Alberta, contact the College of Alberta Midwives at (403) 474-3999 or visit http://www.college-midwives-ab.ca/
  • College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta: public inquiries: 1-800-561-3899 or email publicinquiries@cpsa.ab.ca
  • To find a midwife or for more information about midwifery and home births, visit the Alberta Association of Midwives website: http://www.alberta-midwives.com/
  • For 24/7 health advice provided by registered nurses and other health-care professionals, call Health Link Alberta toll-free at 1-866-408-5465 (LINK).
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