FDA Seizes Birth Pools

Barbara Harper in 1988 Barbara Harper, founder of WaterBirth International takes to her Facebook to share this:

“Okay, here is a big problem that has been lurking for a few months. The FDA has seized all the portable birth pools that are currently imported and are threatening to destroy them. They claim they are unregistered medical equipment, but they are not providing a way or means to get them registered. In other words, if the medical authorities can't stop waterbirth, then just have the FDA take away the birth pools. This IS SERIOUS my dear ones!!! VERY SERIOUS!!!”

Undoubtedly, women who believe in the freedom of birth choices agree with the serious nature of the actions of the FDA.


It is a sad day when we as a society take a step backwards towards  oppression of freedom in the name of greed. Make no mistake, this action was not based on concern by a discriminative organization, but an act of suppression to preserve the bottom line of all who have a vested interest in seeing less women birth at home. How interesting is it that this happens just when the CDC announces a slight rise in home births.


A country who spends the most money on birth with a pitiful record (infant/maternal mortality) to show for it, deserves to have its integrity, motivations scrutinized and questioned…especially considering, despite the recent surge in home births, 99 percent of women still birth in hospitals.


More Information:

Maternal Mortality in 2005

Water Birth Info

Birth Pool in a Box – FDA Approved (Did they seize these too? I wonder….)



  1. They've only seized Barbara's pools. Why is that? Could it be because they were reported to the FDA as unsafe for some reason? Otherwise, there are still other pools for sale in the USA. Makes you wonder what is wrong with HER pools?

  2. The FDA actually doing what they are supposed to do...now there's a thought! :)

    Thank you so much for stopping by to share your thoughts! I would very well agree with the likely possibility of your statement if the FDA didn't state a clear reason for seizing the pools.

    According to them the pools were "unregistered medical devices". So the pools seized were not defective. Barbara shares that the FDA does not give her a way to get them registered. So, while, yes they are for sale in other places, this latest development of FDA policy (??) is "threat" to pools (kiddie pools?) used for birthing. Something that has gotten the homebirth community in a tizzy.

    If the seized Ms. Harper's pools stating that they were "unregistered medical devices" the question becomes, who's next on their list?


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