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Home birth. In your opinion, how far is too far to the nearest hospital?

(9 Posts)
ladysnorkmaiden Fri 21-Sep-12 09:26:02

It is still very early days, but I am trying to get my head around delivery options. I have no doubt that I would be most comfortable and relaxed at home, but my only worry is that we're about 25 miles from the nearest hospital. I understand that when things go very, very wrong, c-sections, for example, don't happen instantly even when one is in hospital, but I can't help but wonder if 25 miles away is just too far.

I am curious what others might think of such a distance, especially those of you who have had a home birth. Would you have still gone through with it if you were so far from hospital?

I would imagine that some of you lucky ones who labour very quickly would say that you would choose to stay home precisely because of the distance. Because this is my first, though, I've no idea if I will be fast or slow. Though I do know which I am hoping for wink

Thanks in advance for your thoughts!

GizzyBoo Fri 21-Sep-12 10:55:36

Well I'm 38 weeks today and am planning a hb with this one. I live in a very remote part of Scotland and although there are 2 midwives here we have no hospital back up at all and any emergency transfer would be by air and would take up to 4 hours.

I have researched and gone over this again and again with my midwife, doctor and husband and feel reassured that this is the right decision for me. It is however a very personal one. I am sure some people would think me highly irresponsible but after weighing up all the risks and benefits a hb is what I want.

My doc and mw are all very supportive and have strict protocols in place for transfer (sooner rather than later) should anything not be progressing as it should be.

Don't forget that issues are often picked up on sooner at a hb as you have constant 1-1 care from a midwife.

Also when researching look up the risks of hospital birth so you can make a truly informed decision.

Good luck x

ladysnorkmaiden Fri 21-Sep-12 11:45:57

WOW...and I thought I lived in the middle of nowhere! wink

Best wishes to you. You must be getting so excited...not long now!

jennycrofter Fri 21-Sep-12 11:49:00

Can I just echo what Gizzy said. Good luck, both of you. smile

steppemum Fri 21-Sep-12 11:54:01

we were 40 minutes in ambulance along twisty road. I decided it was too far. Very personal decision in my opinion.

Imsosorryalan Fri 21-Sep-12 12:03:54

Is this your first? I had a home birth for my second dc, I was very confident it would go the same way as my first ( in hospital) pretty straightforward. That gave me assurances that I could labour at home ok for my second. Not sure I would have taken the risk if it was my first. You just never know how it's going to go and for me, I felt most comfortable being close to help if I had needed it but it's whatever you're comfortable with wink

GizzyBoo Fri 21-Sep-12 13:33:04

Thank you smile

It can't happen soon enough! grin

Purplecatti Mon 24-Sep-12 10:41:48

If you're happy, and the midwives are happy then go for it.
My doctor friend said in the majority of cases that go wrong it happens with plenty of warning (I'm going for a home birth and was worried about the transfer time should anything happen) so you'd probably be organised a transfer at the vaguest sniff of something not being right. It's rare for things to go very wrong very fast, it happens yes but it is unlikely.
Plus as someone else pointed out, you'll have someone with you all the time and they will spot any warning signs very quickly.

ReallyTired Mon 24-Sep-12 10:48:07

I think the important thing is the number of minutes it takes you to get to the hospital rather than the distance.

I think a lot depends on your obstetic history. If you have a history of fast labour the a home birth may well be a safer option than going to hospital. If you have high risk factors like a previous c-section or pregnancy complications then hospital birth may well be safer.

A first labour is otfen quite long because the body has never done it before. Many first timers transfer to hospital because they are tired and need additional pain relief rather than the baby is in any kind of danger.

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