C-section continues to be high in private hospitals: Survey

While institutional deliveries in government hospitals have increased from 61.2% in 2015โ€“16 to 64.8% in 2019โ€“20, Caesarean section deliveries in private hospitals have seen a huge jump from 40.3% to 52.5%, according to the latest National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5) data for Karnataka.

The overall births delivered by C-section have increased from 23.6% to 31.5%. Likewise, births in a public health facility that were delivered by C-section have also increased from 16.9% to 22.6%. โ€œThis is a substantial increase and should be seen as a red flag,โ€ said Akhila Vasan from Karnataka Janarogya Chaluvali.

โ€œDespite 97% of women delivering in institutions (hospitals), it is surprising that only 85.5% of children received attention from trained persons within two days of birth. This illustrates poor quality of newborn care, which, in turn, explains why neonatal mortality is still a concern,โ€ she said.

Delivery expenditure

The average out of pocket expenditure (OOP) per delivery in a public hospital has also gone up from โ‚น 4,824 to โ‚น 4,954. Women in urban areas continue to spend over โ‚น5,000 per delivery, according to the data. While institutional deliveries have increased from 94% to 97%, a point to be noted is that only 64.8% of this was reported in government hospitals.

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