The Birth Survey

I’ve seen The Birth Survey referenced many times across the web, but I didn’t take it until last night. This survey has potential to be a fantastic tool for use in improving maternity services across the US. The makers of the survey wish to bring “Transparency in Maternity Care,” so that all women have access to information and feedback on various providers, hospitals, and birth centers in their area.

The objectives of the Transparency in Maternity Care Project read as follows:

Objective 1
Annually obtain maternity care intervention rates on an institutional level for all fifty states.

Objective 2
Collect feedback about women’s birth experiences using an online, ongoing survey, The Birth Survey.

Objective 3
Present official hospital intervention rates, results of The Birth Survey, and information about the MFCI (Mother Friendly Childbirth Initiative) in an on-line format.

Objective 4
Increase public awareness of differences among maternity care providers and facilities and increase recognition of the MFCI as the gold standard for maternity care.

The Birth Survey included questions about my prenatal, labor, delivery, and postpartum care by any and all providers that saw me during these times. Its questions tracked quality of care, intervention rates, availability of comfort measures, breastfeeding support, circumcision rates, and my satisfaction with my providers. 

I discovered after taking the survey that I could search for any provider in my area to view feedback provided on him or her by other women. Additionally, I found resources for searching birth statistics such as method of delivery, VBACs, birth weights, intervention rates, etc. in each state and each hospital or birth center. I found that 1,011 out of 2,727 total deliveries at our local hospital were c-sections in 2009 (that’s a 37% c-section rate!). About 34% of those cesareans were repeat, and only 21 VBACs were reported for the year. Wow!

This information should be widely available to women choosing maternity care providers and birthplaces. Please take The Birth Survey to share your birth experience, and have all of your friends do it too! It only takes a few minutes, and might help make big steps towards improving maternity care.

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One response to this post.

  1. Posted by dac on April 4, 2011 at 7:59 pm

    What a great tool.

    Reply

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