Written for graduate students and professionals in the fields of midwifery, women's health, and public health, this book explores the freestanding birth center model in the United States from its conception by pioneering midwives and others in the early 1970s to the present day. Compared to the hospital-based birth model, the freestanding birth center offers a well-documented, healthier, more cost-effective, and more humane way to care for women and newborns, consistent with the goals of the Affordable Care Act. This rapidly expanding model of care has many positive implications for high-quality, individualized care and birth outcomes across the United States. Written by U.S. leaders in midwifery, Freestanding Birth Centers: Innovation, Evidence, Optimal Outcomes offers a comprehensive guide to the evolving role of birth centers, clinical and cost outcomes, regulatory and legal issues, provider and accreditation issues, and the future of the birth center model. Woven throughout the text are descriptions of "exemplar" birth centers representing diverse geographical, business, and service models.
These cases illustrate the possibilities for expansion and replication of this model of care. Key Features:* Provides a thorough history of the birth center movement from its inception through future expansion of the model* Serves as an essential resource with up-to-date evidence on clinical and cost outcomes* Includes case studies linking the unique service focus of individual birth centers to the associated sections of the book* Provides practical and comprehensive coverage of all issues involved in running a U.S. birth center