The more interest is shown, the more leverage she has to get information from hospitals to the consumers aka YOU! The general public and expectant parents are the ones who benefit from this information being released.
When I toured Allen Presbyterian Hospital for my teaching certification one of the questions I needed answered was “What is the cesarean rate at the hospital?” The dialogue went something like this:
Me “So what is this hospitals cesarean rate?”
Head of Education Dept “Oh I have no idea. Let’s go ask one of the nurses on duty”
Nurse “We don’t keep track of stuff like that. The number would vary on which doctor you ask. Obviously if you ask someone during the day the rate they would give you would be much higher since we don’t schedule c-sections for 3 in the morning.”
I don’t think this is right. If the staff at a hospital can’t even tell you how likely you are to end up in the operating room then how can you feel comfortable receiving care there?
For each state listed on the site Jill has found the c-sections rates that were reported over the past 10 years. Some have had slight dips in rates but for the most part there is a steady increase year after year. This is unacceptable! Women are getting more and more comfortable with just going along with what their doctor says and if that means scheduling a cesarean because “no one likes surprises” they just say ok.
I’ve said it a hundred times and I’ll say it a hundred more. The c-section rate should be around 3% for medically necessary reasons and emergencies, but some of the hospitals listed are higher than 60%. (and we don’t even have information from all hospitals!)
It should be a requirement for doctors and hospitals to release this information to the public.
In addition to the most current cesarean rates the website also has which hospitals allow VBACs (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean). It’s amazing to me how many have completely banned the practice. In some of the states listed as many as 50% of hospitals have bans on VBACs!
A petition in Reno gives a good explanation as to why this is a matter women should pay attention to
“Women deserve the autonomy to birth their babies in a physiologically normal way. Women who have been educated about the risks and benefits of surgical vs. vaginal birth have the right to choose how they give birth to their babies.
We, the undersigned, request hospital administrators reevaluate their guidelines regarding a woman’s access to a vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC).
Whereas, women with a previous surgical birth have a right to informed consent and informed refusal,
Whereas, the rate of complications from VBAC is comparable to that of an elected repeat cesarean section,
Whereas, the rate of cesarean sections in this country have increased from 5.5% to 32.9% since 1975,
Whereas, the maternal mortality rate in the United States has also increased from 9.2 to 12.7 per 100,000 live births since 1980,
Whereas, the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) states that VBAC is a safe and reasonable option for most women, including some women with multiple previous cesareans, twins and unknown uterine scars,
Whereas, ACOG states that their previous recommendation for emergency cesarean section resources to be “immediately available” was not meant to limit access to vaginal births for women”
Change starts with us! There is a birth revolution going on right now focused on education, questioning, informed consent and birth CHOICES!