Medical emergency or call it a money spinning exercise, the number of urban C-section deliveries in private hospitals has increased by 55% in three years in the Kapurthala district.
However, government hospitals criticised for poor facilities have recorded more normal deliveries than private hospitals, stated a report by the health department.
Private hospitals recorded 2,569 cases this year while the number was 1,142 three years back. Government hospitals recorded 1,269 C-section deliveries this year while the number was same as private hospitals three years back, projecting a slow rise. These hospitals get an average of 200 such cases every month.
The district has recorded 94.4% institutional deliveries, the rest 5.6% at home.
Sources in the health department said complicated cases are mostly referred to private hospitals, where the doctor advises Caesarean surgery for safer delivery and reduced labour pain.
Another reason could be that these surgeries cost double than normal deliveries. Compared to that, government hospitals charge less for both normal and C-section.
On conditions of anonymity, a senior obstetrician said it was a medical call in most cases because the mother has to bear intense labour pain during a normal delivery. “To avoid pain and a safe birth, most mothers want a way out that is least stressful for the baby.”
The health department is also concerned about the increasing number of C-section deliveries. It held a meeting with doctors in private hospitals to know why there was a surge in these deliveries. Kapurthala civil surgeon Dr HS Kahlon said Caesarean deliveries in private hospitals were on the rise but government hospitals preferred normal, adding that private hospitals had been asked to cite a reason for the same.