WHY IS LOUISIANA MATERNITY CARE A CONCERN?
According to the CDC, in 2013: Louisiana had a 38.9% cesarean rate. The highest rate in the United States. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends a 10-15% cesarean rate. The increased cesarean rate has also not improved mother and baby outcomes.
The United States national cesarean rate average was 32.7. This is also high compared to other industrialized countries.
SOME REASONS LOUISIANA CONSTITUENTS FOR SAFE CHILDBIRTH (LCSC) IS CONCERNED ABOUT LOUISIANA MATERNITY CARE:
- Louisiana is tied for 2nd place ranking for highest preterm newborn rate, at 15.1%.
- Louisiana is ranked 2nd for low birth weight newborns, at 10.9%.
- March of Dimes graded Louisiana with a F for number of premature births in the state.
- According to the Department of Health & Hospitals (DHH), from 2009-2011, 96.7% of low risk women had repeat cesareans.
- There is only 1 Free Standing Birth Center in Louisiana, limiting mothers’ birthing options.
- Most consumers have to pay out-of-pocket for midwifery care, thus limiting birth options.
- Midwives do not have their own regulatory board, and instead the Medical Board regulates them. Midwives are also not represented on this board.
WHY ARE CESAREANS A CONCERN?
A cesarean can be a life-saving surgery for both mom and baby. This is a delivery option for women; and we do not believe that a woman having a cesarean is any less of a woman or mother.
While this is a life-saving procedure, it can affect the health of mother and baby. A cesarean is major abdominal surgery. Additionally, the more cesareans you have, the more potential complications (adhesions, placental issues, reaction to medications, and other complications associated with surgery). There is also often a delay in mother and baby bonding and breastfeeding, as well as increased health concerns for baby, such as breathing difficulties, allergies, and increased risk of infection.
Cesareans also affects society at large. Cesareans are expensive, and ALL taxpayers are paying for it. In 2010, the United States spent $111 billion in pregnancy, delivery, and newborn infants. 45% of all childbirth related hospital stays were billed to Medicaid.
With this being said, we hope that women receive information about both risks and benefits of vaginal births, cesarean births, and vaginal births after cesarean (VBAC) from their care providers, community resources, birth workers, childbirth educators, and society at large.
We do not support bullying. We believe that women, and their partners, are intelligent consumers that are capable of making decisions that are best for their body and health, baby’s health, and their family. We ask that they are given accurate information so that they can make an educated decision.
For more information about cesareans, check out Childbirth Connection, Birth by the Numbers, and VBACfacts.
READY TO GET INVOLVED? READY TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN LOUISIANA FOR MOTHERS, BABIES, AND FAMILIES?
Become a MEMBER VOLUNTEER DONATE