Monday, December 1, 2008

Organic birth at your local birth center

The Campaign to Save the North Shore Birth Center in MA continues to successfully prevent closure of one of only two freestanding birth centers in that state. There's been terrific media coverage of the affiliated hospital's plan to close this well-loved community asset and the ensuing local outrage that resulted most recently in a rally of 200 people on a very cold New England day. That's commitment!

One of the local newspapers just did a summary piece on where things stand - "Hospital president to meet with birth center advocates." What's interesting about this article and worth considering, given the nature of our local community, is the powerful effect of the organic / green movement on the growing demand for natural birth. This is a sensible connection to make, particularly here, where evidence of the organic / green movement's influence on local life is strong. Here's the portion of the article that's especially of interest:
Out of about 195 birth centers, about seven to 10 close each year. But for every one that closes, another one opens, she said. And, falling in line with the whole organic and green movement, more people are opting for a natural birth, and Enst believes birth centers are starting to grow as a result.

"Birth centers in general are growing because there's a rising tide going on in how we birth," she said. "It's giving women back control of their birth experience."

As natural births become more popular, she suspects centers will be in high demand.
"Beverly ought to slow down," she said. "They may be giving up the best thing they got."

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