British mothers will have a choice of where they give birth by 2009, the health secretary pledged.
Health Secretary Patricia Hewitt said mothers will be have a "full range of birthing choices" by 2009, including a home birth, a midwife-led birth or a physician-led birth, The Daily Mail reported.
"There is nothing more important than bringing a new baby into the world," Hewitt said during a visit to London's Queen Charlotte Hospital, The Daily Mail reported.
"Our commitment set out today is to deliver 'gold standard' maternity services for women. In practice, this will mean that care is designed around the needs of women and their partners from the very beginning of pregnancy through to providing much better and more personal post-natal care."
The Royal Society of Midwives said England would need an additional 3,000 trained midwives for the plan to work.
Copyright 2007 by United Press International
Explore further: Outcomes of lung transplantations since implementation of need-based allocation system