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Birth Statistics

Volume 87: debated on Thursday 21 November 1985

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will publish in the Official Report the proportion of live births by caesarian section to normal live births for each regional health authority.

The latest available information from the hospital in-patient inquiry (maternity) is shown in the table.The first column

(a) shows the ratio of the number of live births by caesarian section to the number of live births with a spontaneous delivery (that is with no mention of manipulation or instrumentation) in a completely normal case, with no mention of any complication ante- or post-natally.

The second ratio (b) is the number of live births by caesarean section to all live births with a spontaneous delivery, irrespective of mention of any complication.

All live births by forceps, vacuum, breech and with abnormal presentation of head have been excluded from columns (a) and (b).

Column (c) shows the ratio of the number of live births by caesarean section to all live births.

In a multiple birth with at least one birth by caesarean section, all the births are counted as caesarean sections. Births by caesarean section include those done electively, in emergency cases and for other reasons, but none is regarded as a delivery in a completely normal case.

The figures are derived from data on maternal discharges from a one in 10 sample of in-patient records from maternity units of National Health Service (NHS) non-psychiatric hospitals in England, and do not include, therefore, births occurring in private hospitals, at home or elsewhere.

Ratios of live births by caesarean section to 'normal' live births
NHS Hospitals by region of mother's residence 1983 (Provisional)
England

Regional health authority of mother's usual residence

(a) Ratio of caesareans to births with delivery in completely normal case

(b) Ratio of caesareans to all births by spontaneous delivery

(c) Ratio of caesareans to all live births

Northern0·2000·1160·091
Yorkshire0·1930·1190·092
Trent0·3050·1370·099
East Anglian0·2200·1490·107
North West Thames0·2660·1570·112
North East Thames0·2210·1320·101
South East Thames0·2070·1260·093
South West Thames0·2700·1540·113
Wessex0·2250·1260·096
Oxford0·3160·1180·089
South Western0·2600·1470·104
West Midlands0·3730·1100·086
Mersey0·1920·1540·112
North Western0·2760·1380·106