9 lakh ‘preventable’ C-sections in pvt hospitals

AHMEDABAD: There were as many as nine lakh “preventable” unplanned Caesarean section (C-section) deliveries out of 70 lakh in private hospitals in India in one year, driven mainly by “financial incentives,” says a study by Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad.

9 lakh ‘preventable’ C-sections in pvt hospitals

Ahmedabad, December 2

There were as many as nine lakh “preventable” unplanned Caesarean section (C-section) deliveries out of 70 lakh in private hospitals in India in one year, driven mainly by “financial incentives,” says a study by Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad.

Such “medically unjustified” births not just cause “large out-of-pocket expenses” but also “delayed breastfeeding, lower birth-weight, respiratory morbidities” among other troubles for the newborn, it says. The study is titled “Too much care? Private health care sector and surgical interventions during childbirth in India,” and was carried out by IIM-A faculty member Ambrish Dongre and doctoral student Mitul Surana.

The study finds “a woman opting for private facility is 13.5-14 percentage points more likely to undergo an unplanned C-section (compared to public facilities)”.

The figure is based on the fourth round of the National Family Health Survey (NFHS), carried out in 2015-16, which found that 40.9 per cent births in private facilities in India were through C-section as against 11.9 per cent in public facilities. The study observes that “supplier-induced demand” for unplanned C-section births in private facilities is mainly driven by “financial incentives.”

“Even though private providers might be more responsive to patients and exert more effort, they are also more likely to provide over-intensive treatments either as a response to demand from patients or due to financial incentives,” it says. Quoting NFHS, the IIMA study says that a natural birth in private facility costs, on an average, Rs 10,814, while a C-section costs Rs 23,978.

“The supplier-induced demand driven by financial incentives, especially when patient has limited information, is probably an important explanation” for higher rate of C- section birth in private facilities.

“When medically justified, C-sections prevent maternal and perinatal mortality and morbidity. But if performed when not needed, they impose huge burden on the mother and the child that go beyond large out-of-pocket expenses,” the study states.

The study seeks “to evaluate whether the private sector can be an effective partner in providing health services,” especially in the light of the National Health Policy 2017, which provides cover of Rs 5 lakh for poor households to seek secondary and tertiary health care in public or empanelled private hospitals.

In order to bring down the number of “C-sections that are not needed,” the government will have to strengthen “public sector facilities, not just in terms of equipment and staffing, but also in terms of facility timings, absenteeism and attitudes of service providers,” it concludes. — PTI

Nothing but money?

  • 70 lakh  deliveries in private hospitals across India in the 2015-16 financial year; of this, around 9 lakh were “preventable” unplanned C-section deliveries, says the IIM-A study
  • Rs 10,814  average charges for natural birth in a private facility
  • Rs 23,978 average cost if the delivery is through C-section procedure

Don't Miss

Arrival of pets has been the exact disruption we needed

Arrival of pets has been the exact disruption we needed

Modi to Ganguly, how different is BCCI?

Modi to Ganguly, how different is BCCI?

Sins of the father & the aftermath

Sins of the father & the aftermath

Summer of 69, in Himalayas

Summer of 69, in Himalayas

Congress in need of overhaul

Congress in need of overhaul

Top Stories

Night curfew to be imposed in Punjab as Capt announces fresh curbs from December 1

Night curfew to be imposed in Punjab as Capt announces fresh curbs from December 1

Fine for not wearing masks to be doubled from Rs 500 to Rs 1...

'Delhi Chalo' protest: Hundreds of farmers gather along Punjab-Haryana border

'Delhi Chalo' protest: Hundreds of farmers gather along Punjab-Haryana border

Haryana imposes Section 144 to prevent assembly of protester...

Home Ministry issues new COVID guidelines for December

Home Ministry issues new COVID guidelines for December

States/UTs mandated to strictly adhere to containment measur...

Cops rang doorbell at 1.30 am, forcibly took my husband away: Haryana Zila Parishad member’s wife

Cops rang doorbell at 1.30 am, forcibly took my husband away: Haryana Zila Parishad member’s wife

Haryana police personnel raided the houses of dozens of farm...

A host of issues on menu as Amarinder and Sidhu meet over lunch

A host of issues on menu as Amarinder and Sidhu meet over lunch

The meeting could soon see the reinduction of Sidhu into the...

Cities

View All