Home birth inquest findings

The findings of the Coroners Court of Victoria are now available in the matter of Thomas Freemantle. The inquest followed the death of the child, some two days after his birth at home on 19 October 2010.  During the pregnancy, cephalo-pelvic disproportion was identified as a risk factor. The parents agreed that the risks of home birth were canvassed, but asserted that the medical providers were not sufficiently firm in their advice that the child should be born in a hospital.

The Coroner in conclusion noted the need for women planning a home birth to undergo comprehensive risk assessment, including the development of an agreed contingency plan in the event of an emergency.