Home births haven’t been commonplace in the United States for a good long while. In fact, home births even experienced a gradual decline from 1990 to 2004. Now though, new research shows that the number of home births have shot up dramatically since 2004. Researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently found that in 2008, about 28,357 babies were born at home. Keep in mind that this only represents around 0.67% total USA births, but it’s still the highest percentage of home births since 1990 and shows that home births have risen a full 20% in recent years.
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During the recent home birth spike, 27 states experienced significant home birth increases, with Montana, Vermont and Oregon experiencing the highest percentage leaps. Researchers estimate that the factors associated with this increase are largely driven by a 28% increase in home births for white women. Researchers also think that the risk profile for home births has been lowered so women may now feel more comfortable with home birth. Additionally, women interviewed by researchers noted that home birth was desirable due to lower birth interventions and low cost. The CDC report also shows that most of these home births were almost exclusively attended by a certified nurse-midwife, a certified midwife or a non-certified midwife – in very rare instances a physician was present.

+ United States Home Births Increase 20 Percent from 2004 to 2008

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