Friday, March 12, 2010

A few unanswered questions regarding VBAC policy

As I read the reports from the NIH VBAC conference, I find myself asking a few questions I don't believe have been answered by our birth activism community or ACOG or NIH or anyone involved in this issue. As I will be spending a very considerable amount of time in the near future in a chair nursing a newborn, I am hoping to elucidate these questions.

1. Repeatedly we are told of the influence of care provider's insurance policies on a woman's right to VBAC and a hospital's decision to offer VBAC as an option. While I can appreciate the effect lawsuits from maternity patients and their families have had on these policies, to my knowledge no one has studied the circumstances of these lawsuits and how many of them directly resulted from VBAC complications. Are VBAC patients paying for lawsuits brought about by other maternal care issues?

2. While I know there is a growing and vibrant community of birth activists supporting a woman's right to VBAC, from personal experience most of my acquaintances with prior cesareans truly believe a repeat cesarean is safer than a VBAC. Are doctors deliberately fear mongering and if so what can be done to hold them accountable for this serious breech of doctor-patient trust?

3. What can be done at a national level to promote government policy that encourages healthier standards of practice for maternity patients?


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