Nineteen hospitals in the New York metro area have cesarean rates that exceed 40%, with one hospital reporting a rate of 53%, according to Choices in Childbirth’s New York Guide to a Healthy Birth, 2009-10.
The guide includes cesarean rates at every hospital in all five boroughs, Westchester, Nassau and Suffolk counties from 2000-07.
Bronx, increased by 41%, from 21% in 2000 to 29% in 2007
Highest rate: Weiler Hospital (32%)
Brooklyn increased by 29%, from 25% to 32%
Highest rate: University Hospital of Brooklyn (40%)
Manhattan increased by 30%, from 25% to 32%
Highest rate: Lenox Hill (40%)
Queens increased by 37%, from 25% to 35%
Highest rate: Long Island Jewish Medical Center (40%)
Staten Island increased by 14%, from 29% to 34%
Highest rate: Richmond University Medical Center (45%)
Nassau County increased by 46%, from 28% in 2000 to 42%, in 2007
Highest rate in the county: North Shore University Hospital – Plainview (47%)
Suffolk County increased by 38%, from 31% to 43%
Highest rate: Good Samaritan Hospital, West Islip (49%)
Westchester County increased by 46%, from 30% to 43%
Highest rate at Lawrence Hospital, Bronxville (53%)
Dr. Mitchell Maiman, chairman of obstetrics and gynecology and director of gynecologic oncology at Staten Island University Hospital, told Choices in Childbirth that both the national cesarean rate and New York’s rates are “extremely disturbing” and stressed that patients must be made aware of the relationship between cesarean section rates and quality of care.
Calling for healthcare providers and government officials to begin a discussion of how to deal with the rising cesarean rate, New York Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum told Choices in Childbirth that “it is time to ask whether New York City has sufficient low-intervention birthing options.”
Elan McAllister, president and co-founder of Choices in Childbirth, reported the following in the organization’s most recent press release:
“Women regularly call our office to share how they have felt confused and betrayed by a medical system that shuts them out of the decision-making process without involving them in the care plan.
“We urge families and the medical community to educate themselves about the risks as well as the benefits of c-section and remember that the highest level of medical intervention is not always required, and is not necessarily the safest option for the mother and child. To that end, Choices in Childbirth is working to collaborate with area hospitals and address this troubling trend.”
Newly-designed Choices in Childbirth web site