Today Show Smacks of Media Sensationalism

The Today's Show with Peter Alexander aired the "Perils of Homebirth" on 09/11 and featured a couple whose homebirth ended in a stillborn baby. I feel for them, I truly truly do. There can be nothing more heartwrenching than loosing a baby.

But, this report is incomplete and leaves people with a strong slant toward the evil of home birth without the whole story. We don't know what led up to the babies demise, if an OB would have caught the problem (as home birth midwives monitor similarly to OBs), etc... and worse of all, the ACOG is capitalizing on this couple's grief!

In addition, it is, simply, a ridiculous article that seeks to undermine the intelligence of the public by giving shoddy journalism by way of insinuation, incomplete information, and the like.

Code Mec! Code Mec! - Rixa wrote it best - go read there for many more linkies to additional favorite reads. Go there after watching the below video and see why my Journalism prof is rolling over in his grave right now.


KBH said...

What a sad story. I'm very sad for the couple that lost the baby.

I don't understand the comment about it being impossible to compare homebirth deathrates to hospital birth deathrates because of the fact that hospitals deal with higher risk patients. Hospitals also deal with many, many low risk patients AND the hospital is supposed to be where you would go to handle those high risk pregnancies, so why would they not be able to compare. The problem is that doctors and midwives are NOT working together enough. OBGYN's are trained surgeons and SHOULD be the ones handling HIGH RISK births, but you don't need a surgeon at EVERY low risk, normal birth! Right??

There are always risks with birth, but I, like many other women, am more scared to give birth at a hospital and risk unnecessary intervention (which I would say happens WAY more often than the situaion in the story) THAN risk a very uncommon and rare complication in a low-risk homebirth.

Beckaboo said...

this story is THE topic of conversation on my home birth chat forum. They're going as far as requesting the Today show to interview all of us.

It's tragic, but we don't know the whole story & how many babies & mama's die everyday in the hospital? my aunt works in the hospital and just last week lost a baby and almost two mom's because of hemorrhaging but we didn't see a story about that.

AND don't get me started on trendy! You've got to be kidding me!

Deb said...

I, of course, feel so awful for the parents who lost their baby. that must truly be one of the worst hardships to endure.

However, it seems that the piece used their story to scare people out of believing that homebirth could be a wonderful experience. The news piece only briefly mentioned the numerous studies supporting the safety of homebirths.

I was also infuriated by the insinuation that without a doctor, the whole birth experience was unsafe!


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