HIGHLAND | This Monday, Northwest Indiana families will join an estimated 12,000 parents, healthcare providers and advocates in all 50 states at Labor Day rallies around the country to call attention to the crisis in U.S. maternal health care.
The 2013 Rally to Improve Birth will take place in more than 170 U.S. cities, Japan, Australia, and Canada, at 10 a.m. local time, Monday. Locally, the Rally toImprove Birth will be held from 10 a.m. to noon at Wicker Park, on the northwest corner of Ridge Road and U.S. 41.
Supporters will call for safer, evidence-based birth practices that put women and babies before profits, convenience and liability concerns.
Indiana’s C-section rate of 30.3 percent is significantly higher than the 15 percent suggested by the World Health Organization as a highest recommended rate. While some will point to older, more obese, less healthy mothers as the reason for such high rates of Cesarean surgery, research shows that the most variability in rates is currently among low-risk women, and the Joint Commission, the national accrediting body for hospitals, recently pointed to “physician factors” as the driving force in these differences.
And, though the U.S. has the highest maternity care costs in the world, it ranks 45th in maternal safety, according to data from the United Nations, which lists the U.S. maternal death rate tied with that of Iran and Hungary.
Rally attendees will call for maternity practices that put mothers and babies first, including obtaining fully informed consent, using medical interventions only when necessary and reducing the rate of Cesarean section.