This is the question posed in the Daily Mail this morning, as Carol Sarler asks, Is the NHS’s obsession with doctor-free births putting babies at risk?
Here is the response I've just posted beneath it:
"Considering the DM has published some of the most vociferous criticisms of planned caesareans in the past (including reference to the outdated 1985 WHO recommendation), incl. articles like those of Jenni Murray (Sep.2012 Get real, girls! Pain is part of childbirth, and Nov.2011 The madness of Caesareans on demand), it's about time that the balance is being redressed. Thank you.
And while I don't agree with some aspects of the article above, the most important messages are that we need more calls for more obstetricians in the UK, and that midwife-led birth units should not be forced on women - or recommended based on biased ideology.
Choice is a good thing, but choice is NOT what's been happening in our maternity wards. Let's hope things will change from here on, and the RCM, NCT and RCOG will realise that a 'normal birth' means different things to different women - but for the vast majority, a healthy physical and psychological outcome is more important than mode or place of delivery."