Swimming against the tide: women's experience of choosing a homebirth in Switzerland

Brailey, Sue, Jarrett, Patricia, Luyben, Ans and Poat, Angela (2015) Swimming against the tide: women's experience of choosing a homebirth in Switzerland. British Journal of Midwifery, 23 (11) . pp. 780-788. ISSN 0969-4900 [Article] (doi:10.12968/bjom.2015.23.11.780)


Background: Choice in childbirth, which also involves choice of place to give birth, is a fundamental right of all women. Despite the availability of health-care options for maternity services, most women living in Switzerland continue to give birth in hospital. This paper explores factors influencing the decision of Swiss women to give birth at home.

Study design: A descriptive qualitative study was used. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with six pregnant women living in Switzerland who were planning a homebirth. Data were analysed using thematic analysis.

Findings: Previous hospital experience, expectations of homebirth, women’s attitudes to birth, and personal and societal influences were reasons women gave for choosing a homebirth. Homebirth offered women more autonomy, less medical intervention, and a more relaxing environment than traditional hospital settings.

Conclusion: Women in Switzerland who choose homebirth are motivated by the same factors as women elsewhere. The findings from this study suggest a need for personalised maternity care which supports women in their childbirth choices.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Published Online: November 09, 2015
Keywords (uncontrolled): Homebirth, Switzerland, Semi-structured interviews, Women’s choice, Decision-making
Research Areas: A. > School of Health and Education > Adult, Child and Midwifery
Item ID: 18196
Useful Links:
Depositing User: Patricia Jarrett
Date Deposited: 15 Oct 2015 17:01
Last Modified: 10 Aug 2017 13:14
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/18196

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