Home birth: Transfer to hospital

The Australian College of Midwives has published a first edition guideline regarding transfer from planned home birth to hospital care.

The guidelines provide:

  • guidance to midwives in situations where transfer from a planned birth at home into hospital is required during the intrapartum and immediate postpartum period and up to six weeks postpartum, for either the woman and/or her newborn;
  • guidance to midwives if the woman declines transfer for herself and/or her newborn; and
  • a template Transfer of Care Summary for use by the midwife transferring the woman and/or her newborn from home to hospital.

The guidelines include a requirement that the midwife

  • During the pregnancy, inform the woman of circumstances which may result in the need to transfer.
  • Recommend that the woman book into a hospital;
  • Establish a professional relationship with the hospital.

Requirements are also set out in respect of neonatal transfers.


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