Caesareans have turned into a moneymaking racket. Surely, on International Women’s Day, we should be talking about pregnant women’s rights.
In India, childbirth has turned into a moneymaking racket, with caesarean sections pushed by unscrupulous medical practitioners in search of profit. Healthy young women who could easily have had normal, natural deliveries are lied to, told that they and their babies are at risk, and advised to have invasive surgery. Worried families feel helpless and afraid to refuse doctors’ orders. Thousands of women in even the smallest towns are put through this ordeal for no medical reason at all.
Until 2010, C-sections were limited to 8.5% of all deliveries in India, just under the recommended level of 10-15%, according to a World Health Organisation report. However, during the past decade the numbers have shot up. In Kerala, India’s most educated, aware state, 41% of deliveries are C-sections and Tamil Nadu, another relatively well-off state, has 58% of its deliveries by C-section, reports the ICMR School of Public Health. Major cities in particular have seen an exponential growth in C-sections in both private and public hospitals, while one study revealed a rise from 31% to 51% over just six years in rural Haryana.