Each year, roughly 25,000 American women decide to deliver their babies at home, and the numbers are on the rise.
The main reason is a wish to avoid overly invasive procedures during childbirth. Deliveries taking place at home tend to involve far fewer medical interventions and complications.
However, midwife-assisted home births cannot always be easily or legally arranged.
Only 27 U.S. states license or regulate professional midwives. And in the 23 states that lack licensing laws, midwife-attended births are illegal, and midwives may be arrested and prosecuted.
However, according to Time Magazine:
"Momentum appears to be growing. Of the 27 midwife-friendly states, eight began licensing midwives only in the past decade. And legislatures in 10 other states are now considering bills to institute licensing of [professional midwives] -- a fact that has not gone unnoticed by the medical establishment …
Both the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) ... oppose home birthing."