Methodist Hospital has been recognized by the March of Dimes for reducing
the number of elective inductions and cesarean deliveries performed before
39 completed weeks of pregnancy.
“We’re proud of our expert team of physicians and nurses who
recognized the problem of unnecessary early deliveries and that they have
been proactive in putting policies in place to avoid scheduling Cesarean-sections
or inductions before 39 weeks of pregnancy, except when medically necessary,”
said Gary R. Colberg, FACHE, President and CEO at Methodist Hospital.
Brenda Hester, RNC, Director of Maternal Child Services at Methodist Hospital,
noted, “Elective delivery before 39 weeks, according to the American
College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, should not be done unless
medically indicated. Babies born too early risk having breathing problems,
temperature control problems, feeding difficulty, high levels of bilirubin,
hearing and vision problems as well as learning and behavior problems.
We want babies to be born healthy without these complications.”
“The last weeks of pregnancy are important. Babies aren’t just
putting on weight. They are undergoing important development of the brain,
lungs and other vital organs,” said Edward R.B. McCabe, MD, PhD,
March of Dimes Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer. “We
commend Methodist Hospital for being a champion for babies with their
quality improvement effort.”
Even babies born just a few weeks early have higher rates of hospitalization
and illness than full-term infants, according to McCabe. Although the
overall threat is small, the risk of death more than doubles for infants
born at 37 weeks of pregnancy when compared to babies born at 40 weeks,
for all races and ethnicities. Babies who survive an early birth often
face lifelong health challenges, such as breathing problems, cerebral
palsy and learning disabilities.
Melanie Moch, Director of Data Collection and Training at the Kentucky
Hospital Association (KHA), presented a banner to Methodist Hospital in
recognition of the high level of success achieved in reducing early elective
deliveries. “Methodist Hospital has been an active participant in
the Hospital Engagement Network (HEN) project initiated in 2012. KHA partnered
with the March of Dimes during the project, which aligned with its ‘Healthy
Babies are Worth the Wait’ campaign.” It urges women to wait
for labor to begin on its own if their pregnancy is healthy, rather than
scheduling delivery before 39 weeks.
“We applaud Methodist Hospital’s commitment to the best care
possible for moms and babies.”
For questions regarding this press release, please contact Brandi L. Schwartz
at 270-831-7836 or