Study finds that biggest share of US obstetric hospitals deliver fewer than 500 babies per year

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A research team led by the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) analyzed the birth numbers and geographical distribution of maternity hospitals across the United States and found that several of these hospitals give birth to less than 500 babies annually. bottom. Researchers also found that nearly one-fifth of small hospitals are more than 30 miles away from another maternity hospital, and more than half are in rural communities.

Survey results released today JAMA network openDocument variations of birth With volume hospital It shows isolation across the United States and how those indicators change with urban or rural locations, laying the foundation for future research on birth outcomes for the entire population.

“With much of what we know about childbirth Birth results It comes from a large and busy academic hospital, but the largest proportion of maternity hospitals in the United States is the exact opposite, “said Dr. Sara Handley, a neonatologist at CHOP and the lead author of the study. “This study recorded the status of maternity hospitals across the country, which allows us to survey all babies and improve outcomes, regardless of where they were born.”

Nearly 4 million babies are born each year in the United States, accounting for 20% of hospitalizations, including mothers. Previous studies have shown that access to hospitals that provide obstetric services gives better results for both babies and mothers, but historically, in terms of birth numbers and geographic distribution throughout the state. , There were few documents regarding the availability of maternity hospitals nationwide. Closeness to other maternity hospitals and local or urban status.

Researchers analyzed data from to determine the composition of US maternity hospitals

An annual survey of hospitals from the American Hospital Association (AHA) and the Medicare Medicaid Service Provider Center (CMS) from 2010 to 2018 selected hospitals that provide obstetric services that gave birth to more than 10 babies annually. I am. In summary, the data provided information on the births of more than 34 million people during the study period.

They were born in large hospitals, where most babies (56.8%) give birth to more than 2,000 babies a year, while 7.4 were born in so-called small hospitals, which give birth to 10-500 babies a year. I found that it was only%. However, when analyzing maternity hospitals, researchers found that small hospitals had the largest share of the nation’s maternity hospitals (37.4%). In short, most babies are born in large hospitals, but few. Nationwide, there are more hospitals than smaller ones.

In smaller hospitals, 18.9% were not within 30 miles of other maternity hospitals. This is a situation that researchers have labeled as “isolated.” Of the small number of isolated maternity hospitals, 58.4% were in rural areas. Some large hospitals were also quarantined, but they tended to be in small metropolitan areas.

“We know that access to obstetric care leads to better results, and previous studies have also shown better results in larger hospitals,” Handley said. “Given this, our study is particularly useful in considering approaches to improving the provision of perinatal care and related policies in all communities, regardless of size or location.”

The research team also included members from the University of Minnesota and Stanford University.


Studies show poor access to obstetrics and newborn care in low-income areas.


For more information:
Handley et al. “Births and Geographical Distributions of U.S. Hospitals Providing Obstetric Services, 2010-2018” JAMA network open, Online October 8, 2021 DOI: 10.1001 / jamanetworkopen.2021.25373

Quote: According to a survey, the largest share of maternity hospitals in the United States is 500 per year acquired from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-10-biggest-obstetric-hospitals-babies- on October 8, 2021. I am giving birth to less than one baby (October 8, 2021). year.html

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