Home births may be allowed in QC on certain conditions
MANILA, Philippines — Pregnant women may soon be allowed to give birth at home in Quezon City, but there’s a long list of requirements.
The author of a city ordinance banning home birth has sought to amend the measure by allowing the Quezon City Health Department to issue permits allowing mothers to deliver at home.
The proposed measure of Councilor Jessica Castelo Daza, a medical doctor, states that home births are not illegal per se but the risks could be lessened through proper arrangement of home deliveries.
The draft ordinance filed on Tuesday, states that a pregnant woman who wants to deliver at home must submit the following to the city health department not later than two months from the expected date of delivery:
- Letter of intent that serves as a waiver that the mother understands the risks of home delivery;
- Clearance from an obstetrician gynecologist
- Clearance from a pediatrician
- Qualification of the person assisting in delivery
- Contract of admission from a tertiary hospital in case of medical emergency
- Contract from the barangay to provide transportation if the hospital has no available ambulance
- Processing fee of P250
In 2012, Ordinance No. 2171 was passed in line with the Department of Health’s policy promoting facility-based deliveries assisted by professional birth attendants.
Daza said the main concern of the ordinance was to lessen the risk of maternal or fetal deaths brought about by unplanned deliveries, lack of sufficient prenatal checkup and deliveries attended by unskilled and unqualified birth attendants.
The women’s group Gabriela had opposed the DOH policy and the local government’s banning of home birth as the urban poor could not afford birthing clinics.
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