In Others' WordsIn Others' Words

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Rikki Lake versus the AMA and ACOG

Former talk show host Rikki Lake is squaring off against two powerful medical organizations: the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG).

ACOG recently issued a statement, which the AMA supports, that says the home is not the safest place to have a baby because "an apparently uncomplicated pregnancy or delivery can quickly become very complicated."

The ACOG statement reads:

“ ...the safest setting for labor, delivery, and the immediate post-partum period is in the hospital, or a birthing center within a hospital complex, that meets standards jointly outlined by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and ACOG, or in a freestanding birthing center that meets the standards of the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care, The Joint Commission, or the American Association of Birth Centers."

So why is Lake at the center of this controversy? Her film, "The Business of Being Born," a documentary of the maternity care care system, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, shows Lake giving birth to her second son, who is now 7, in the bathtub of her Manhattan apartment.

The AMA states that "much attention in the media by celebrities having home deliveries" -- and then the resolution specifically mentions Lake and her film.

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