DeKalb Medical Center: VBAC, Waterbirth, and Vaginal Breech Birth, Part 1

****UPDATE AUGUST 28, 2016: All of this information is now outdated mere days after it was released. Please see our more recent blog for a more updated presentation of the circumstances.

 Photo courtesy of

Photo courtesy of

On the evening on August 18, 2016, See Baby Midwifery released a statement on Facebook that lit the Atlanta birthing community ablaze. This statement explained that DeKalb Medical Center had chosen to revoke their hospital privileges for waterbirth, VBAC, and vaginal breech delivery.

This came as a huge shock to patients, both past and current, birth workers, nurses, and others in the Atlanta birth community. Many families who were expecting to enjoy waterbirth as an option for delivery at DeKalb Medical Center are now feeling that their options have been swiftly and severely limited, and those in the community at large are left wondering what happened, and why it happened on the timeline it did.

DeKalb Medical Center clarified its position in a statement on the evening of August 20:

VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean)

  • Patients with one or two prior surgeries may be eligible for a TOLAC (trial of labor after cesarean) depending on their care provider and practice.
  • SeeBaby patients are ineligible for VBAC at DeKalb Medical Center and will need to change their plans to birth with Dr. Bootstaylor at Emory University Hospital Midtown.
  • Patients attempting VBAC with SeeBaby at EUHM are eligible for a doula stipend.






  • Waterbirth is not an option at this time for any patient with any provider.

  • Laboring in water remains an option, but underwater delivery is not.



Vaginal Breech Delivery

  • This policy has not changed, according to DeKalb Medical Center.

  • SeeBaby/Dr. Brad Bootstaylor do not have vaginal breech delivery privileges at DeKalb Medical Center.

  • Patients are being advised to contact their specific provider to see if they perform these types of deliveries. At the time of publication of this blog, we are unaware of any other providers who provide this service at DMC.

We at Intown Doula understand that having your plans and preferences tampered with during the eleventh hour of pregnancy can be overwhelming, upsetting, and scary. We want to do everything in our power to assist you as your family navigates your new plans. If you feel you would benefit from additional, unbiased, compassionate support from a team of trained, experienced professionals, please don't hesitate to be in touch.

We are here for you. We hear you, and we see you. You are not alone.