Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools

You are here: Home > About us > News and events > Information on homebirths during planned ambulance strikes

Information on homebirths during planned ambulance strikes

24 January 2023

The planned ambulance strike on Monday 23 January may impact your planned homebirth with the homebirth team at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital or West Middlesex University Hospital.

Planned ambulance strikes may impact your planned homebirth with the homebirth team at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital or West Middlesex University Hospital.

On days of strikes, there is no guarantee that an ambulance or paramedic will be able to come to your home in the event of a homebirth complication. The days around this date may also be affected and ambulances may take longer to reach homes than usual. Your safety and the safety of your baby are our top priority. In view of this, we strongly recommend that if you go into labour on the day of a strike that you give birth at the maternity service at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital or West Middlesex University Hospital. 

We recognise that this is upsetting and not the birth you planned. The homebirth midwives who have been caring for you will provide care at our maternity service so you will still know your midwife for your birth.

Should you wish to decline to come to the maternity service, the homebirth midwives will still come to your birth at home as planned. However, this may compromise you and your baby’s safety. Without ambulance service backup, in the event of an emergency, there may not be an ambulance available to attend to you and transfer you and/or your baby to hospital. This may result in a delay in treatment that could have an effect on you or your baby. 

We do not wish to alarm you or cause distress, but we are legally obliged to inform you of all the information and options available to allow you to make an informed decision. 

Under usual circumstances, homebirth can be considered a safe choice—however, this is only the case if there is access to a well-established emergency transport system. Please rest assured that your choices and decisions will be respected. 

Please call your homebirth midwife to discuss any concerns or questions you may have, or contact the maternity triage team:

  • Chelsea and Westminster Hospital: 020 3315 6000 option 1
  • West Middlesex University Hospital: 020 8321 5839 option 1