News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search


Home Birth Aotearoa Statement on Coroner Report

Home Birth Aotearoa Statement on Coroner Report into Deaths Of Casey Nathan And Son

It is with the greatest empathy to the whānau of Casey Nathan and her son Kymani that Home Birth Aotearoa releases this statement in response to the Coroner’s Report recommendations.

Home Birth Aotearoa maintains that the New Zealand model of partnership between midwife and mother is the best in the world. We promote informed consent and personal responsibility for choices in pregnancy and childbirth.

Home Birth Aotearoa rejects the recommendation of the Coroner, based on the findings in this one singular case, to make changes to midwifery training that include hospital internships for new graduates. Research, including the recent Birth Place study in the UK, repeatedly shows that the safest place for a low risk birth to take place is at home, followed by a primary birthing unit. Any changes made to midwifery training in New Zealand should involve more time spent at births at home and in primary units.

Home Birth Aotearoa National Coordinator Rachel Yeats states “midwives who have a better understanding of ‘normal’ birth will be better able to distinguish an ‘abnormal’ birth and therefore have better judgement of when to make referrals outside of their scope of practise.”

Home Birth Aotearoa supports midwives and their integral role in birthing families. We recognise the skill, wisdom and commitment midwives bring to the cause of physiological birth. The model of partnership we enjoy in New Zealand is world class and to be protected at all costs.

Home Birth Aotearoa is in full support of the enhanced mentoring of graduate midwives as part of the Midwifery First Year Of Practice Programme. We encourage mothers and midwives to have students present at their home births so that a greater appreciation for normal, natural birth – and its reverse - can be attained.

We do not support the vast criticisms of the midwifery system based on one singular case. We do not believe that undermining the midwifery profession in our nation will be beneficial to families.

“Birthing mothers need to have faith in their lead maternity carers in order to feel safe. Expressing doubt that our midwives have been adequately trained - when our maternity system is internationally regarded as of the highest class - does not make mothers feel safe”, says Home Birth Aotearoa Trustee Sian Hannagan.

Home Birth Aotearoa acknowledges that the complication in this case is extremely rare and it is thus difficult to control against many factors including the model of care.


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis: Emerald Fennell's Promising Young Woman'

The Guardian needed not one, but three reviews to do justice to Fennell's unsettling approach, which indicates exactly how ambiguous and controversial its message really is. More>>

Howard Davis: Jill Trevelyan's Rita Angus

Although Angus has become one of Aotearoa’s best-loved painters, the story of her life remained little known and poorly understood before Jill Trevelyan's acclaimed and revelatory biography, which won the Non Fiction Award at the Montana New Zealand Book Awards in 2009, and has now been republished by Te Papa press. More>>

Howard Davis: The Back of the Painting

Painting conservators are the forensic pathologists of the art world. While they cannot bring their subjects back to life, they do provide fascinating insights into the precise circumstances of a painting's creation, its material authenticity, and constructive methodology. More>>

Howard Davis: Black Panthers on the Prowl

A passionate and gripping political drama from Shaka King, this is an informative and instructive tale of human frailty that centers around the charismatic Chicago Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, who was murdered at the age of twenty-one during a police raid. More>>

Howard Davis: Controlling the High Ground

Stephen Johnson's raw and angry film not only poses important questions with scrupulous authenticity, but also provides a timely reminder of the genocidal consequences of casual bigotry and xenophobia. More>>

Howard Davis: Dryzabone - Robert Conolly's The Dry

After the terrible devastation caused by last year’s bushfires, which prompted hundreds of Australians to shelter in the ocean to escape incineration and destroyed uncountable amounts of wildlife, The Dry has been released during a totally different kind of dry spell. More>>

Howard Davis: Hit the Road, Jack - Chloé Zhao's Nomadland

Nomadland is perhaps the ultimately 'road' movie as it follows a group of dispossessed and disenfranchised vagabonds who find a form of communal refuge in camp sites and trailer parks after the economic contraction of 2008. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland