9983 Keele St., Unit 102 
Vaughan ON, L6A 3Y5
F: 905 553-5949
Advantages
Hospital
• You don’t need to do laundry or purchase additional supplies
• Some people feel safer in hospital and therefore will labour more effectively
• Drugs for pain relief are available (morphine, epidural)
• Quicker access to more help in emergencies
• Cultural acceptance (if there are problems at the birth, people will not question your decision about choice of birthplace)
Home
• Labouring in a familiar place surrounded by loved ones helps many women have normal births with less intervention
• Less intervention leads to fewer problems: less surgery to give birth, shorter recovery time, less chance of mother/infant separation, greater success with breastfeeding
• Less risk of mother or baby getting an infection
• More independence for decision-making
• A decision to move to the hospital can be made anytime
Disadvantages
Hospital
• increased use of interventions often lead to more interventions (electronic monitors, epidural, forceps, vacuum, caesarean section)
• Interventions often lead to more problems: pain, getting an infection from the hospital environment, longer recovery time, mother/infant separation, problems with breastfeeding
• Policies limit individual decision-making
• Being in hospital does not guarantee access to all emergency services (doctor or surgeon may not be immediately available)
Home
• There will be some minimal cleanup & laundry
• Epidural & morphine are not available at home
• True emergencies are uncommon, and midwives do emergency treatments at home similar to the first steps carried out at a hospital. However moving to the hospital by ambulance may be needed, which may delay other kinds of treatment (eg. for postpartum hemorrhage, newborn resuscitation)
• Cultural resistance (if there are problems at the birth some people might say “it wouldn’t have happened if you had been in the hospital”)