A new study says some hospitals have Cesarean rates that are well above national targets.
We know the C-section rate is at an all-time high. And that's concerning, since having a Cesarean birth carries inherent risks for both mother and baby, and has even been linked to long-term, adverse health effects for children, including an increased chance they will be obese, and develop diabetes and asthma.
Of course, some C-sections are unavoidable and promise the best outcome for mother and child. But it's often theorized that certain doctors and hospitals have become C-section happy, and may perform the procedures either prematurely or unnecessarily. By some estimates, as many as half of all C-sections could actually have been avoided!
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Researchers looked at 1,300 U.S. hospitals, and say these are the 22 with Cesarean rates that far exceed the national target of 23.9 percent or lower, set by the Department of Health and Human Services. The report focused on first-time moms, who for all intents and purposes should have been at a low risk of needing C-sections. As in, they didn't experience pregnancy complications, were expecting only one baby, and that baby was not in a breech position.
RELATED: How to Avoid Having a C-Section
Without further ado, here are the hospitals that perform the most C-sections in the nation, along with their individual rates:
1. South Miami Hospital, Miami, FL—51 percent
2. Richmond University Medical Center, Staten Island, NY—44 percent
3. Hackensack University Medical Center, Hackensack, NJ —43 percent
4. Woman’s Hospital of Texas, Houston, TX—41 percent
5. Midland Memorial Hospital, Midland, TX—40 percent
6. Inova Fairfax Hospital, Falls Church, VA —39 percent
7. Las Palmas Medical Center, El Paso, TX—39 percent
8. Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano, Plano, TX—39 percent
9. Memorial Regional Hospital, Hollywood, FL—38 percent
10. Henrico Doctors' Hospital, Richmond, VA—37 percent
11. Doctor’s Hospital at Renaissance, Edinburg, TX—37 percent
12. Baptist Hospital of Miami, Miami, FL—37 percent
13. Riverside Community Hospital, Riverside, CA —36 percent
14. Bayshore Medical Center, Pasadena, TX—35 percent
15. Jackson Health System, Miami, FL—35 percent
16. Boca Raton Regional Hospital, Boca Raton, FL—34 percent
17. St. Joseph's Healthcare System, Paterson, NJ—34 percent
18. Medical Center at Bowling Green, Bowling Green, KY—34 percent
19. Baylor All Saints Medical Center at Fort Worth, Fort Worth, TX—34 percent
20. Wesley Medical Center, Wichita, KS—34 percent
21. Inova Alexandria Hospital, Alexandria, VA—34 percent
22. Baptist Medical Center, San Antonio, TX—34 percent
Go to the Consumer Reports site if you want to see the response of each hospital that made this list.
It's worth noting that no one is saying these hospitals are bad places to deliver your baby. But if you are concerned about your risk factors for having a C-section, talk to your doctor ahead of your delivery. Make sure you understand your chances for a Cesarean birth, and also know both your doctor's and hospital's policies regarding when C-sections are recommended and/or required.