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Jean-Pierre
MARGUÉNAUD
Professeur à la Faculté de droit et des sciences économiques de l’Université de Limoges
Membre de l’Institut de droit européen des droits de l’homme (IDEDH)

16 novembre 2016 - Cour eur. dr. h., Gde Ch., Dubska et Krejzova c. République tchèque

With the arrest Dubska and Krejzova of 15 November 2016 of its Grand Chamber, the European Court of Human Rights chose to let fall the wind of freedom that had been raised by the arrest Ternovsky of 14 December 2010 in favor of women choosing to live the unique and delicate moment of giving birth at home. Leaning on the arguments of the medical community defending that the risks for the mother and the new-born are necessarily lower in a hospital facility equipped to deal with emergencies, the Court paradoxically finds that a legislation making the assistance of a midwife at home de facto impossible is not contrary to the right to respect for private life. The Court nevertheless invites the respondent State to make further progress by keeping the relevant legal provisions under constant review, provisions from which it could at least be expected to allow women choosing to give birth at maternity hospitals to feel there more like home thanks to a better taking into account of their wishes and objections likely to upset doctors.

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