13. Out-of-Hospital Birth

  1. Melissa D. Avery PhD, CNM, FACNM, FAAN
  1. Marsha E. Jackson and
  2. Alice Bailes

Published Online: 24 JUN 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118783320.ch13

Supporting a Physiologic Approach to Pregnancy and Birth

Supporting a Physiologic Approach to Pregnancy and Birth

How to Cite

Jackson, M. E. and Bailes, A. (2013) Out-of-Hospital Birth, in Supporting a Physiologic Approach to Pregnancy and Birth (ed M. D. Avery), John Wiley & Sons, Inc., West Sussex, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118783320.ch13

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 24 JUN 2013
  2. Published Print: 3 JUN 2013

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470962862

Online ISBN: 9781118783320



  • authority;
  • birth center birth;
  • centrality;
  • home birth;
  • out-of-hospital birth;
  • privacy;
  • system barriers


This chapter provides a brief overview of the history of home birth and birth center birth in the United States, including the consensus statements from the 2011 summit “The Future of Home Birth in the United States: Addressing Shared Responsibility”. Research supporting home birth for low-risk women as well as a philosophic framework are discussed. The chapter provides basics of safe out-of-hospital birth including the use of consultation networks, safe transfer and receiving of clients, quality improvement, and two case studies illustrating these principles. Finally system barriers to successful out-of-hospital birth are presented. Women are more satisfied with their birth experiences when their sense of control is enhanced. Giving birth in the home or birth center setting not only purposefully limits technologic interventions but also increases the authority, centrality, and privacy of the client, enhancing the opportunity for her to birth normally.