Updated: 08/05/2014 2:47 PM
Created: 08/04/2014 5:27 PM KSTP.com
By: Cassie Hart
A birth policy change sparked a rally Monday outside a western Wisconsin hospital. The mothers and mothers-to-be are upset over how they're being told they can give birth.
Starting Aug. 31, Hudson Hospital will no longer offer what's called the VBAC procedure, which stands for vaginal birth after Cesarean.
Under the new policy, if a woman had a C-section at the hospital any other babies she delivers there will have to be born via C-section as well.
The protesters aren't happy about the change. Laura Nelson gave birth to her first child via C-section. She's now eight months pregnant with her second child and is due on Sept. 4. She says she is switching doctors because of the new policy.
"It's been very stressful and frustrating and an emotional two weeks, and I just really hope that they change their policy about VBACs here," Nelson said.
A written statement from Hudson Hospital reads, “A joint decision was made last week by Hudson Hospital’s medical staff leadership and hospital administration to suspend Vaginal Births After Caesarian Section (VBAC) deliveries beginning on Aug. 31. We support VBACs as an option for women, but at this time we cannot provide this service due to human resource constraints. We have shared this change with expectant mothers who have a planned VBAC that may occur after Aug. 31 and are working with their physician to find an alternative hospital.”
We check the policies regarding VBAC procedures of several other metro hospitals. Hennepin County Medical Center, Regions Hospital, North Memorial Medical Center and Fairview Hospitals all offer VBAC to moms-to-be. Most Allina hospitals do as well.
Smaller hospitals outside the metro, including Cambridge Medical Center, do not. They don’t have the staffing necessary to monitor the procedures.
Allina also eliminates VBAC if a woman has had two or more C-sections or got pregnant less than a year after her last delivery.
The hospitals all recommend women considering VBAC should talk to their doctor to discuss the risks and benefits.