MUM’S THE WORD: C-section idea is just a step too far for me

Kate and Nancy Chapman
Kate and Nancy Chapman
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I think I must be a bit behind in my current affairs but I’ve just read one of the most ridiculous news articles I’ve ever come across.

According to a recent Sunday Times report all women could soon have the right to give birth by Caesarean on the NHS – whether there is a medical need or not.

The article based on a draft report by NICE (National Institute for Clinical Excellence) says women were previously expected to give birth naturally unless there was a medical reason not to but the guidelines are being changed because the procedure is now much safer than it was before. And doctors who do not wish to follow these new rules will be able to refer women who want a C-section to other doctors who are willing to carry out the procedure. The report apparently is only a draft and will be published later this month after consultation.

Now, I’m all for everyone making their own choices but this is just a step too far. Women have been giving birth for thousands of years. If it was really that bad would anyone go back and do it a second, third, or fourth time? And why would anyone elect to have major surgery without there being medical reason is beyond me. All I can do is put it down to celebrity culture and the rise of the ‘too posh to push brigade’.

There are so many things you can’t do while you’re recovering from a Caesarean – least of all bend down and pick up your newborn. And those who have undergone the procedure tell me they would have done anything to have been able to give birth naturally.

I’m not going to lie to you, before I had Nancy I was absolutely terrified about the prospect of labour – especially since there are always those so willing to tell you how excruciatingly painful the whole affair is going to be. Plus all TV portrayals in the delivery suite go way over the top with the screaming and shouting. But it’s like anything else – you always hear about the worst cases, never the good ones. Fortunately I was lucky; for any mums-to-be-out there, I’m not going to lie to you, it was painful – but that’s soon all forgotten once your newborn is in your arms. (And get yourselves a TENs machine – I found it a God send!)

I read somewhere else that by increasing the number of C-sections carried out by just one per cent will cost the country another £5.7m a year. Plus every procedure carried out costs the NHS £800 more than a natural labour – so why on earth isn’t the money put to better use; to employ more midwives to help women give birth naturally in a calm environment, so they can enjoy the experience and make the transition from mum-to-be to mother more easily?