Women 'need to know the risks of Caesareans'
Mothers-to-be who request a Caesarean birth should be referred for counselling before it is granted to curb rising demand for the operation, an NHS watchdog has recommended.
Caesareans cost £800 more than vaginal births and increasing numbers of women are requesting them despite there being no medical reasons for doing so in most cases, according to the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE).
NICE issued a new guidance yesterday that says care in childbirth should "take account of women's needs and preferences". But it notes that the caesarean rate has almost doubled from 13 per cent in 1992 to 23 per cent in 2008-09. The guidance says when a woman requests a caesarean her obstetrician and other medical professionals should discuss the risks and benefits with her.
If she has a fear of childbirth, she should be offered a referral to a "healthcare professional with expertise in providing perinatal mental-health support to help her address her fears in a supportive manner". Only if a vaginal birth is still "not an acceptable option" should her request for a caesarean be granted.
Christine Carson, the programme director at NICE, said: "Recent evidence shows that a caesarean section is not necessarily the best course of action in some cases." Research shows that women having a caesarean spend longer in hospital. The draft guidance is open for consultation until 20 June.
Life & Style blogs
Plus live in a folly tower and Towcester growth
Plus how much you need to earn to rent in London, and new homes figures
Plus where The Apprentices live, house price growth outside London, and househunter numbers
The 10 Best Scotch Whiskies
Casualty in crisis: A&E - a service in meltdown
The myth of the modern dad exposed: New book claims men still won't sacrifice their careers for fatherhood
The experts' guide to summer: From getting fit for the beach to recreating that Olympic buzz
Obsessive compulsive hoarding: A serious health risk in store
- 1 Heading for America? Prepare for the longest US immigration queues ever
- 2 Notes from a small island: Is Sealand an independent 'micronation' or an illegal fortress?
- 3 You thought Ryanair's attendants had it bad? Wait 'til you hear about their pilots
- 4 'Swivel-gate': David Cameron at war with press over 'swivel-eyed loons' slur
- 5 It’s official: thanks to Stephen Hawking's Israel boycott, anti-Semitism is no more
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Find out what The Independent's resident travel expert has to say about one of the most beautiful small cities in the world
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.
£28000 - £31500 per annum + benefits: Randstad Education Newcastle: Permanent ...
£50000 - £58000 per annum + Benefits and Bonus: Progressive Recruitment: SAP F...
£30000 - £40000 per annum + BENS: Progressive Recruitment: Drupal Developer A ...
£45000 - £50000 per annum + bens: Progressive Recruitment: C# WEB DEVELOPER Le...