A new government study found some interesting results and disparities in injuries to women and babies during childbirth. From the study, released this month by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, it appears that poor women are less likely to be injured during deliver, but their babies are at higher risk.
According to the government study, women covered by Medicaid were less likely to be injured in childbirth than those women with private insurance. Their babies, however, were more likely to experience complications, such as broken collar bones, head injuries and infections. A similar result was also found when researchers compared births in urban and rural hospitals. Researchers found that mothers had fewer complications in rural hospitals while their babies suffered greater risk.
Overall, however, the news from the study was positive. Researchers observed that childbirth complications have declined in the years between 2000 and 2006. For this study, researchers scrutinized data from 1,000 hospitals that are part of a national database. Included in the study were 158,000 injuries that could potentially have been prevented. Although researchers were not able to compare injuries to babies from 2000 to 2006 because hospitals changed the way that they computed those statistics in 2003, they were still able to determine that there were 32 injuries per 10,000 deliveries.
Despite the decline in birth related injuries, there are still those that can be avoided with proper care. The results of this study lead some to wonder where the cause of the disparity lies, but without further research it is difficult to determine.