QUESTION NO: 98 for WRITTEN ANSWER on 06/03/2008
* To ask the Minister for Health and Children the number of community midwives working under the home birth scheme in County Cork; when this scheme was established; if she will ensure the continuation of this scheme and resolve any issues in relation to insurance; and if she will make a statement on the matter. David Stanton T.D.
The Deputy’s question relates to the management and delivery of health and personal social services, which are the responsibility of the Health Service Executive under the Health Act, 2004. Accordingly, my Department has requested the Parliamentary Affairs Division of the Executive to arrange to have the matter investigated and have a reply issued directly to the Deputy in relation to the number of community midwives working under the home births scheme in Cork, the date of establishment of the scheme and plans for its continuance.
I am aware of concerns in relation to indemnity insurance for independent midwives. The Irish Nurses Organisation provides a certain level of insurance cover to independent midwives who are members of the organisation. The INO had indicated that they would not be providing insurance cover after 31st March, however, I understand that it has been in touch with its insurer about extending this cover until the end of September.
I support choice for women in childbirth. The option of domiciliary births must only be provided in a safe and secure manner. My officials are working with the HSE to put in place a robust national clinical governance framework in order to ensure that the practice of independent midwives is brought into close working relationships with maternity services currently delivered by the HSE and the voluntary maternity hospitals. Subject to this being acheived it would then be the intention to bring the independent midwives within the scope of the Clinical Indemnity Scheme by means of an extension of the cover under the scheme to the HSE.
QUESTION NO: 99for WRITTEN ANSWER on 06/03/2008
* To ask the Minister for Health and Children the number of births under the home birth scheme each year for the past five years respectively; and if she will make a statement on the matter. – David Stanton T.D.
My Department and the ESRI publish an annual report on perinatal statistics. The most recent published statistics relate to 2004. The table below sets out the number of home births attended by independent domiciliary midwives and births under the hospital administered home birth schemes for the years 2000 to 2004.
|Home Births attended by Independent Domiciliary Midwives
|Births under Hospital Administered Home Birth Schemes