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Pregnant Woman in Australia Gets a Visit from the Pitocin Police

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Via The Daily Telegraph:

A HOSPITAL that wants a mother to have her baby induced sent police to her home after she failed to keep an appointment yesterday.

Rochelle Allan, who is reluctant to be induced even though her baby is 12 days overdue, was told by the hospital they intended to go ahead with the procedure when she came in.

But after speaking to her midwife following a visit to the hospital the day before, and being assured her baby was fine, she decided not to attend the hospital the next day.

Now Ms Allan is furious after the two police officers arrived on her doorstep after they were called by Bathurst Hospital.

Wanting a home birth, Ms Allan, 24, has been under the care of a private midwife and had been attending the hospital daily to monitor the baby’s health.

“I couldn’t believe it when I saw the police officers at my door,” Ms Allan said.

“They told me they had been asked by the hospital to check on my welfare because I had not attended.

“The hospital knew I did not want to be induced and they gave me no medical reason why I should be.”

Throughout her pregnancy, Ms Allan and her partner Daniel Jones have been regularly attending the hospital’s antenatal clinic for mandatory tests and scans to monitor the baby’s progress. A hospital spokeswoman confirmed police were sent to Ms Allan’s house to conduct a “welfare check”.

The spokeswoman said doctors were worried about the mother as she had previously complied with all appointments.


The article also stated that by late yesterday, Allan’s labor had begun and she was at home with her midwife.

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Reader Comments (15)

(insert mildly funny M&M commercial here) They do exist!

January 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKatie

I live in Finland (born and raised) where I also gave birth to my son almost exactly a year ago. I was 11 days overdue when he was finally born. The hospitals don't even give you an "overdue appointment" until you are at least 14 days overdue, and that's when they only start talking about inducing labor (at least with normal, uneventful pregnancies). Mothers are encouraged to stay at home for as long as they possible feel comfortable with and bath tubs are available at most hospitals. My midwife even gave me acupressure! Vaginal birth is strongly recommended and supported.

We are moving to the US (my husband is American) within a year and I really hope I will get pregnant with our second child soon so that I can give birth here. I am genuinely scared of giving birth in the States.

January 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTytti

Wow. So do they do that for ALL patients who routinely show up for appointments, but then miss one? Wouldn't a phone call have been easier?

January 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKnitted in the Womb

Wait, so she went into labor ALL ON HER OWN? Without the hospital pumping her full of artificial oxytocin? How in the world did that happen? </sarcasm>

January 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLori

I hope that whoever called the police gets a new arsehole torn for wasting police time!

January 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnji

Can you imagine doing to the math on wasted Australian tax dollars in the past 12 months birth issues? Between police visiting pregnant women's homes "just in case" and the ridiculous legislation that violates civil rights and got the Aus. government gobs of bad press, I really wonder how much time and money is being wasted by people in positions of power who are unwilling to let birth JUST HAPPEN.

January 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDarlene

Just try saying "No!" once you are already on their turf.

January 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnon

At what point did pregnant women become obligated to "comply" with the medical industry's management of birth? The word "complied" used by the hospital spokeswoman totally makes it sound as if she has to fulfill some sentence- as if being pregnant is a crime and she had followed through with their ruling up until she didn't show-up to be induced. Why can't the medical establishment just respect a baby's need to finish it's INDIVIDUAL gestational duration?

January 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSherwood

This is ridiculous, but it seems like there's an increasing trend in law enforcement and the court system being used to intimidate pregnant women, and in some cases to force them to go along with medical procedures against their wishes. Some hospitals and healthcare providers will attempt to use child protective services for the same thing. It's just another way of implying that a woman loses her human rights and control over her own body once she is carrying a baby.

January 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRaine

The article also makes reference to "mandatory" tests, of which, to my knowledge, do not even exist. Recommended tests can all be declined. The wording creates the impression that declining tests and (ultrasound) scans during pregnancy is illegal, which is not the case at all. It's very misleading.

January 15, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnon
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