Yet as lifesaving as C-sections can be, an astounding one in three American women now give birth surgically, up from one in five a decade ago. The World Health Organization says that the country’s rate shouldn’t be above 15 percent, which suggests that more than half of U.S. C-sections are medically unnecessary. “When you see that C-section rates have increased, you have to consider [the correlation to the maternal death rate],” Maureen Corry, president of the advocacy group Childbirth Connection, told The Daily Beast. “There are good indicators that there’s some connection between the two.”
Like C-sections, medical innovations such as drugs to induce labor and devices to monitor fetal heart rates can be lifesaving, but they can also lead to complications in healthy women. When an intervention is unnecessary—performed out of convenience or protocol—the harms can outweigh the benefits. “We’re doing more and accomplishing less,” Corry said.
But Elliott Main, a San Francisco-based OB/GYN and principal investigator of the California Maternal Quality Care Collaborative, warned against pegging the rising maternal mortality rate solely to changing demographics: Mothers over 40 have a higher death rate than younger mothers, he told The Daily Beast, but most American women who die in childbirth are in their twenties or thirties.
Despite the rising maternal mortality rate, pregnancy-related deaths in this country are still rare. Most doctors and nurses will go their entire career without encountering one. Yet as a result, many hospitals have become “complacent that mothers just don’t die anymore,” said OB/GYN Main. “There’s been a little relaxation,” and women’s lives are sometimes lost as a result.
Caterpillar came out today and said the health care bill will cost their company 100 million. This company is struggling, effecting layoffs and trying to compete globally. How are they to do that with more demands placed on them? Then people wonder why corporations leave the country and we have no jobs. This is why!