Organizers’ message

Dear Visitor,

After several previous workshops and meetings organized in the field of waterbirth, now we get the courage to swim into deeper water. During these three days spent with Barbara Harper we will explore the tiniest details about all the possible risks and benefits of waterbirth.

Water is the source of life. There is no life without water. Labouring women instinctively look for water. Some of them take a rest in water, others do not leave it until releasing their baby into it. In Hungary, just like in other countries of Europe, more and more maternity units offer labouring women the use of a birth pool or tub. However, there are several myths regarding the safety of waterbirth holding back some obstetricians and midwives from recommending the use of water in any stage of labor. The lecturer will give an overview of old and recent research and the latest evidence (including the risk of infection, perineal lacerations and its repair, temperature of the water, sterilization of the water, practical skills for birth attendants, diving reflex, third stage, etc.)

Based on her practical experiences, Barbara Harper will share case studies where water is incredibly helpful, but she will also discuss contraindications.

Main topics:

  • Why and how is movement facilitated by water?
  • Why and how are the mother, the bonding of mother and baby and their environment supported by water?
  • How is the release of ecstatic hormones (oxytocin, endorphins, adrenaline, prolactin) promoted by water?
  • How can water ensure continuous support during the entire process of birth?
  • Why is water effective against infections?
  • Scientific evidence
  • Ambiguous issues regarding waterbirth


We would like to reach a wide audience with the message of our conference.

For this purpose, we would like to minimalize all costs, as long as the standard of quality can be maintained. This is why we chose a free domain for the website and this is why we ask participants to take care of their own accommodation and catering. There will be no conference giveaways, in order to keep the participation fee as low as possible. We decided to organize a simultaneous interpretation to accommodate the needs of those who do not speak English. The expenses of interpretation equipment and interpreters are not included in the participation fee, so only those will pay for these services who need them (this means that additional fee is charged daily for the headset used for listening to the interpretation).

The venue is accessible for disabled people.

Our goal is that this conference will help to get closer to the ideal situation, where physicians and midwives go hand in hand for the benefit of the birthing woman and the baby.

physicians and midwives go hand in hand for the benefit of the birthing woman and the baby

The organizers:
Alternatal Foundation,
Department of Affective Psychology of Eötvös Loránd University Faculty of Education
and Psychology, Hungarian Association of Independent Midwives
e-mail: Conference Organisers: Alternatal, FBSz, ELTE PPK APT