Bulgarian Obstetricians Want Incrimination of Home Birth

Society | May 12, 2011, Thursday // 10:30
Bulgarian Obstetricians Want Incrimination of Home Birth: Bulgarian Obstetricians Want Incrimination of Home Birth Bulgarian obstetricians say giving birth to a baby at home, without the presence of a doctor, amounts to endangering the life of a child. Photo by Sofia Photo Agency

A mother's choice to give birth at home without medical help must be incriminated, Bulgarian obstetricians and gynecologists demand.

The information was announced by the Deputy Director of the Saint Sofia maternity hospital in the capital, Dr. Valentina Grigorova, cited by the Bulgarian daily Monitor.

Doctors want amendments to the Penal Code to provide sanctions for the above said mothers and for birth at home to be treated as a crime same as the endangerment of the life of a child.

Grigorova informs a meeting of obstetricians, with the majority supporting the move, to vote on the decision, is pending in the next few days and after that it would be taken to the Parliament, adding sanctions would not pertain to women giving premature birth at home.

The move is provoked by the drama which occurred on May 6 (St George's Day), when a 32-year-old woman with a dead baby in her hands appeared five minutes before midnight at Saint Sofia. She had given birth at home, which was near the hospital. The newborn was not breathing at the time of birth. The doctors could do nothing else but certify the death of the baby.

Current Bulgarian legislation postulates pregnant women, just before birth, are considered being in the state of insanity and cannot be charged, legal experts say, with Grigorova admitting women cannot be held responsible for their actions during the process of delivering a baby.

The doctor further says women have the right to give birth without direct medical intervention, but it still must be done in a hospital and in the presence of a gynecologist, adding Saint Sofia already has such practice with future mothers asked to sign a declaration early during the pregnancy.

The woman who gave birth of the dead baby at home has serious and numerous infections, but had already left the hospital on her own will to prepare for the baby's funeral, doctors from the hospital say, adding despite the antibiotics they have prescribed, the infection could progress and that they worry she would not seek hospital care.

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Tags: obstetricians, birth baby, home, doctorс, endangering the life of a child, delivery, Maternity hospital, home birth, Saint Sofia

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