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Dominican Republic – Maternity and Giving Birth

The Dominican Republic is a country located in the Caribbean and has a population of approximately 11.5 million people. The birth rate in the Dominican Republic is approximately 20 births per 1000 people, and the majority of births occur in hospitals.

In this article, we will discuss the most common options for giving birth in the Dominican Republic, the process of registering a birth, and the attitudes and legislation surrounding abortion.

Options for Giving Birth

The most common option for giving birth in the Dominican Republic is in a hospital, with approximately 97% of births occurring in hospital settings. The remaining 3% of births occur either at home or in birthing centers.

There are both public and private hospitals throughout the Dominican Republic that offer obstetric services. Public hospitals provide free obstetric services to Dominican citizens, while private hospitals charge a fee for services. Private hospitals tend to have more modern facilities and equipment, but can be more expensive.

Midwives are also an option for women who prefer to give birth at home or in a birthing center. However, it is important to note that midwifery is not a regulated profession in the Dominican Republic, and there are no established standards for midwifery practice.

Registering a Birth

In the Dominican Republic, births must be registered with the Civil Registry within five days of the child’s birth. The parents or legal guardians of the child are responsible for registering the birth.


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To register a birth, the following documents are required:

  • Certificate of live birth issued by the hospital or attending physician
  • Identification documents of the parents or legal guardians (passport, national identity card, or residency card)
  • Marriage certificate (if applicable)
  • Payment of a registration fee

Once the birth has been registered, a birth certificate will be issued by the Civil Registry. The birth certificate is an important legal document and is required for a variety of purposes, including enrolling the child in school and obtaining a passport.

Attitudes and Legislation Surrounding Abortion

Abortion is highly restricted in the Dominican Republic. The only circumstance in which abortion is legal is when the life of the pregnant woman is at risk. In all other cases, including cases of rape or incest, abortion is illegal.

The penal code of the Dominican Republic imposes penalties for women who undergo abortions as well as for the medical professionals who provide them. Women who have abortions can face up to two years in prison, while medical professionals can face up to 20 years in prison.

Despite the restrictive legislation surrounding abortion, it is estimated that approximately 100,000 abortions occur each year in the Dominican Republic. These abortions are typically performed by untrained individuals in unsafe conditions, putting the health and safety of women at risk.

In conclusion, the most common option for giving birth in the Dominican Republic is in a hospital, with public hospitals providing free obstetric services to Dominican citizens. Private hospitals are also available for those who can afford them. Births must be registered with the Civil Registry within five days of the child’s birth, and a birth certificate will be issued.

Abortion is highly restricted in the Dominican Republic, with the only legal circumstance being when the life of the pregnant woman is at risk. Women who have abortions and medical professionals who provide them face severe penalties under the law.


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