Early Elective Delivery Rate
The percentage of patients with elective deliveries (either vaginal or cesarean) between 37 and 39 weeks gestation. (A lower percentage is better)
Primary Cesarean Delivery Rate
Cesarean delivery for birth of first child, with the exception of exclusionary criteria for reasons for the cesarean delivery. (A lower percentage is better)
Why is this important?
The goal is to reduce the number of early elective deliveries, by elective induction or cesarean section. Early elective inductions can result in more cesarean deliveries, longer maternal length of stay, doubles the cesarean delivery rate, higher rates of adverse respiratory outcomes, mechanical ventilation, sepsis and hypoglycemia for the newborns. The standards of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology and the American Academy of Pediatrics require 39 weeks of gestation before elective delivery, for the safety and well-being of the baby. Cesarean delivery is associated with increased maternal morbidity (e.g., increased rates of uterine infections and hemorrhage), in addition to the increased financial burden on the health care system. Cesarean section has been targeted as a potentially overused procedure, as the rate of Cesareans has increased over the past few decades. Cesarean delivery occurs approximately 1.4 million times annually and accounted for approximately one-third of U.S. deliveries in 2008.
Data available from the Health Research and Educational Trust, California Hospital Engagement Network, November 2014.