About the GoodBirth Network
What is the GoodBirth Network?
The GoodBirth Network is a collaboration of professionals working to recognize, honor, and promote good birth practices and birth home models of care.
If you are a birth home looking to connect to a global community, please join our network. We welcome you. We have so much to learn from each other!
If you are a midwife or other healthcare provider, please join us to explore best practices, solutions, and birth home models of care.
If you are an investor or strategist for the well-being of mothers and newborns, please join us to learn facts, stories, and issues associated with birth homes on a global scale.
The mission of the GoodBirth Network is to share and promote good birth practices and birth home models in low-resource communities.
Why Birth Homes?
Birth is a time of celebration. For mothers and babies in resource poor communities, it is also a time of critical risks. Birth illuminates both the the dignity and vulnerability of human life. Birth homes are health facilities within communities that are prepared to celebrate and protect mothers, babies, and families for this special time.
Globally, the themes of celebration and protection are lived out in a diversity of good birth practices and birth home models of care.
How do I Join?
In addition to the publicly available information on this site, the GoodBirth Network shares resources and hosts discussion forums. These are available after a one-time registration. Individuals and birth homes are welcome to register. There are no fees. You may elect to receive notifications from our online forums.
Join us Today!
What is a Birth Home?
Birth homes are known by a variety of terms. English language examples include birth center, birth centre, birthing house, community birthing home, midwife-led unit, maternity home, maternity out-patient center, normal birth unit, and out-of-hospital maternity unit.
We follow and present global discussions surrounding the definition of mid-level or intermediate facilities existing between a home and hospital as places for birth. We also present a ‘bottom-up’ view, showing examples which will ultimately help define birth home, and perhaps help to establish global standards.
For now, we offer this list of characteristics of a birth home:
• Care for low risk pregnancies and support of normal births
• Continuous risk assessment
• Minimal medical interventions
• ‘With woman’ philosophy of care (women centered, respectful, interactive, holistic, wellness oriented care)
• Emphasis on patient education and decision making
• Safe, comfortable, and homelike environment, separate from other healthcare activities
• Rooted in local community
• Integrated with local healthcare systems
• Commitments to health safety, personal safety, cultural safety, and community safety
What is a Good Birth?
One of the goals of the GoodBirth Network is to consider this question as a global community. We commonly think of a good birth as a safe birth. But safety includes more than just medical needs. A good birth includes personal physical safety, psychological and social safety, and cultural and religious safety. A place of birth must also be safe for its community (sustainability, how it respects the environment, how is treats its staff, etc.).
How do birth homes provide these layers of safety to support a fully good birth? This is a question worth pursuing together. Spotlighting good birth practices already in place around the globe are a part of that pursuit.