December 29, 2004

VBAC Backlash

On Slate, David Dobbs examines the recent dramatic drop in the number of VBAC's, Vaginal Birth After Cesarean, which has occurred as more and more hospitals ban the procedure--and force women to give birth via cesarean again.

The reasons, Dobbs finds, are not the "safety and health risks" hospitals tell their patients--75% of VBAC's go routinely, 24.5% end up as conventional c-sections, and 0.5%, 1-in-200, require emergency c-sections. It's the insurance and financial risk of lawsuits relating to that 0.5%, and the cost and managerial issues associated with having a surgery staff available if they're needed.

The solutions he finds--better informed patients and medical staffs, including the birthing centers and midwives who step up to perform amny VBAC's that accurately assess patients and their risks-- "highlight the perversity of hospitals banning VBACs" in the first place, Dobbs writes.

Study up, folks.

VBAC Backlash - Why are hospitals forbidding women who have had C-sections the right to have vaginal births? [Slate]

1 Comment

At my first prenatal, I received a brochure from the hospital at which I will be delivering of a list of all the courses and packages they offer to expecting parents, first time or no. One of them was a course on VBAC which was highly encouraged for those in that position. I wish I had the brochure with me to check, but I do believe there was some fine type stating they could not guarantee post-cesarian patients the option of a birth delivery without the completed course.

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