Cheyne H (2013) Making childbirth risky: an unintended consequence of the normal birth agenda?. Zepherina Veitch Memorial Lecture at Royal College of Midwives annual event, 2013, National Gallery of Scotland, Edinburgh, 13.06.2013-13.06.2013. https://www.rcm.org.uk/news-views-and-analysis/analysis/risk-under-the-spotlight
First paragraph: Zepherina Veitch was a nurse and a midwife in the late 19th century. She was a founder of the Midwives Institute (which ultimately became the Royal College of Midwives), and she worked to improve the training and status of midwives, at a time when maternal and infant mortality in Britain was high; infant mortality was around 150 in 1000 births (1), and approximately 3000 women died in childbirth each year (2). Although at that time it was described as being safer to have a home birth with the attendance of a skilled midwife than to give birth in a hospital under the care of a doctor (2), the high level of maternal mortality associated with childbirth had become a national scandal and through the following century, in the attempt to improve the wellbeing of mothers and babies, institutionalisation and medicalization of childbirth became the norm.