Homebirth Summit Transfer Guidelines

“We believe that collaboration within an integrated maternity care system is essential for optimal mother-baby outcomes. All women and families planning a home or birth center birth have a right to respectful, safe, and seamless consultation, referral, transport and transfer of care when necessary. When ongoing inter-professional dialogue and cooperation occur, everyone benefits.”  --Homebirth Consensus Summit Common Ground Statements, Collaboration Task Force

The Collaboration Task Force was formed at the 2011 Homebirth Summit to research and implement ways to improve communication between all professionals who are involved in maternity care. Their initial focus was on improving outcomes for the small percentage of women who transfer to the hospital from planned home and freestanding birth center births. Good communication and coordination between providers increases safety for the mother and baby. Since safety is always the highest priority, the focus was on creating detailed guidelines to be used by all involved providers to facilitate mutually respectful transfer of care.

The Best Practice Guidelines: Transfer from Planned Home Birth to Hospital was the result and are freely provided for use as a starting point for the developement of policies in independent practices and hospitals. They can be downloaded here or at the bottom of the page. Organizations, institutions, health care providers, and other stakeholders are encouraged to endorse the guidelines 

​Three Transfer Guidelines Model Forms – Maternal, Infant, and Nurse – were created to accompany the Best Practice Guidelines: Transfer from Planned Home Birth to Hospital. These forms were designed for immediate use by individual practitioners and institutions or as a part of a larger transport protocol. To access the forms, please visit the Homebirth Summit website and complete the Request for Home Birth Summit Model Forms.

Read about the Homebirth Summits in our Advocacy section and at homebirthsummits.org