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The low rate of Cesarean delivery in Native American women may be attributed to practices common to the Indian Health Service.

The low rate of Cesarean delivery in Native American women may be attributed to practices common to the Indian Health Service. A study examined the rate of Cesarean delivery among Native American women giving birth from 1996-1999 at an urban Indian Health Service facility, and found the rate to be 9.6%, which is well below the national average of 21.2% (in 1998). The Cesarean rate was lower even though many study participants had more risk factors for a Cesarean than the general population, such as higher rates of diabetes and pregnancy-induced hypertension. This appears to be due to medical and practice-related factors. Nurse-midwives attended the vast majority (82%) of labors at this facility during this time; nationally, in 2002, only 8% of births were attended by nurse midwives. In addition, Indian Health Service centers have been found to have fewer unnecessary inductions of labor than other mainstream facilities.

Birth, September 2005
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Publication:Women's Health Activist
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 1, 2006
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