Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Zombie Statistics that Just Won't Die

A couple of years ago the WHO retracted their statement that c-section rates above 10-15 percent illustrated an excess use of the procedure. They retracted this statement in 2009 - because it was based on absolutely no real evidence. Yet in 2011 - this zombie statistic continues in it's undead form to haunt everywhere, all the time.

Targeting any particular rate of intervention or non-intervention is a fool's quest. Targeting a particular method of delivery is absurd. These targets put process ahead of outcome and do nothing to advance the health and well being of mothers and babies.

Want a meaningful target - how about lowering the rate of maternal mortality. Lowering infant mortality. Lowering rates of birth attributable disability. Improving maternal satisfaction. How about reducing the rate of post-partum depression. Maybe reducing the rate of post-traumatic stress disorder might be good too.

Shift the focus to OUTCOMES, real OUTCOMES and maybe, just maybe, things will get better for moms and babies.

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