AUGUSTA – The Maine Senate is considering a bill that would regulate home births in an attempt to ensure that they are safe.

The bill states that it proposes to license and regulate certified professional midwives who practice in the state. It would create criteria for licensure and oversight, and require data collection for quality improvement.

Members of the Maine Association of Certified Professional Midwives, Maine Osteopathic Association, Maine Family Planning and the Alliance for Maine Women all testified in support of it previously.

Anne Head, commissioner of the state Department of Professional and Financial Regulation, has opposed it. She raised questions about whether new regulations would benefit public health.

Sen. Amy Volk, a Scarborough Republican, proposed the bill. The Senate discussed the bill Thursday and decided to table it until later.

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