NICE caesarean guidelines

The National Institute for Clinical Excellence in the UK has released new guidelines that give women the right to request a caesarean under their public health care system, the NHS. These new guidelines have been quite controversial.

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LIVERPOOL’S top midwife last night welcomed new guidance to give pregnant women the choice of having a Caesarean.

The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) said the option should be given to women who are genuinely fearful of childbirth or have had difficult births previously.

But the authority said it was not recommending offering the procedure for all mothers-to-be.

... “If a woman has had a really traumatic time with a previous birth and cannot face the risk of a similar experience, we would agree to her opting for an elective Caesarean.

“Also, we work with women who actually suffer from what is a recognised phobia around childbirth.

... Some pregnant women say they have had to fight to get a Caesarean on the NHS when they feel they have a genuine reason to justify one. It is hoped the guidelines will prevent this and make the situation across England fairer.

NICE says the number of Caesareans could actually decrease, because of counselling measures brought in to explain the risks and also the likelihood of a natural birth being safe.

... “If a woman just said it was what she wanted for no good reason, we would spend some time with her and support her to make the right decision. “The recovery from a natural birth is much quicker.

... Very, very few women opt for a Caesarean unless they need one for themselves or to safeguard the baby.”

... “This guideline is not about offering free Caesareans for all on the NHS; it is about ensuring that women give birth in the way that is most appropriate for them and their babies.

“For a very small number of women, their anxiety about childbirth will lead them to ask for a CS.

“The new recommendations in this guideline mean that these fears will be taken seriously and women will be offered mental health support if they need it.

“If the woman’s anxiety is not allayed by this support, then she should be offered a planned CS.”...

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