Wednesday, May 09, 2007

This Really Sucks!

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, next month there will only be eight hospitals in Philadelphia that deliver babies, down from 19 a decade ago. Why? Because maternity care is a "money loser."

They can't make enough money off people having babies to make it worthwhile to care for them.
I am so fed up with the state of health care in this country. Back when I first started realizing that hospitals were run by private corporations, and not funded from taxes, the possibility of something like this happening crossed my mind.

Childbirth care for the indigent has always been sketchy, but it did stay barely on the "acceptable" side of the scale. This situation is not acceptable.

For quite a while now, there has existed the alternative of home birth, with midwives in attendance. However midwives require that the home be within 15 minutes of a hospital, and will only accept low-risk clients.

When we stop looking after mothers and babies, we are risking our existence as a society.

Why is this not obvious to everyone?


  1. I totally agree with you Ronni. Mothers and babies deserve better. Part of the problem is the cost of malpractice insurance. I have a friend who is a gynecologist in a very small private practice. About 10 years ago, she dropped the 'OB' because she just couldn't justify the cost of the insurance any more. It cost her over $70,000 to DROP it. They have to pay it out until the the time at which the last baby they delivered will reach the age of 18. I don't even want to get started on health care in this country. Suffice it to say you and I are on the same page. I wish there was an answer.

  2. Carol, our whole society deserves better! Without available hospital care, the mothers must travel farther to have their babies in hospitals. I think it might increase the number of births taking place in unsanitary conditions, and without attendants.

    I had two babies at home, and highly recommend it, combined with proper pre-natal care, qualified midwives, and conditions as sterile as possible.

    But, I am worried about mothers giving birth with no help, and in dirty surroundings. I am worried about infant mortality rates rising, and they are already horrible, compared to countries that have government health coverage.

  3. Well, a hospital can say that they don't do maternity, but they can't by law turn away a woman in heavy labor, just like they can't turn away a heart attack patient. They just won't have fancy birthing suites and amenities, but I guarantee they will be delivering babies in the ER if nowhere else. Not the best care indeed, but there you have it. We Don't do maternity, my ass.

  4. I know you're right, Marsha.

    Still adds to the perception that mothering is not valued in our society, and that signals dysfunction, to me.