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Midwifery push to free Ágnes

Posted: 22 February 2013 by Rob Dabrowski

The Justice for Dr. Ágnes Geréb Movement has launched a new campaign to improve midwifery in Hungary.

New push to free Ágnes
Ágnes was jailed and banned from practicing as a midwife after providing home birth services, which are illegal in Hungary.

The campaign group is now calling on the Hungarian government to deliver a ‘real midwifery profession’ for the country.

It believes this is critical to freeing Ágnes and improving the situation for midwives and mothers-to-be.

Spokeswoman Erika Schmidt said: ‘We launch this on behalf of Hungarian birthing mothers to highlight the shocking fact that Hungarian obstetric hospital nurses and licensed home birth midwives are not legally allowed to fulfill all of their professional roles.

‘Right now, we have a situation in Hungary where obstetricians are the only profession legally permitted to provide maternity services throughout the pregnancy and to deliver a baby in hospital.

‘This is unfair to the many mothers who would choose to use a midwife-led care but finds that neither she nor the midwife has any choice in this matter.

‘Not only is this an insult to the professional competence of hospital obstetric nurses and independent midwives but also it is against European laws and standards of practice.’

Human rights lawyer Bea Bodrogi added the ruling on births ‘conflicts’ with European law.

She added: ‘The government needs to legislate to comply with the directive or expect to face a challenge on this in the EU.’

The movement is asking international supporters to contact their Hungarian embassies about the issue, and Hungarian supporters are writing directly to the ministers of health and justice in Budapest.

For more information, please click here.