Skip to main content
Back to news homepage

RCOG statement on unassisted childbirth or ‘freebirth’

News 22 June 2007

The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) is aware of the small number of women choosing unassisted childbirth or 'freebirth'.

Whilst the RCOG fully supports normal birth and believes that every woman should have the right to give birth in an environment in which she feels comfortable, the safety and wellbeing of the mother and baby is paramount.

Before choosing a place of birth all women should be fully informed of the potential risks, which may include the need for intervention, transfer to hospital and/or pain relief. Obstetricians and midwives are concerned with the safety of both patients, mother and child.

The RCOG would like to stress that at present, the practice of freebirth is new to the UK and little research exists regarding its safety and success.