Senator Grisanti sponsors bill to improve birth outcomes and promote informed consultation between women and doctors

Mark Grisanti

March 08, 2012

In honor of International Women’s Day, Senator Mark Grisanti (R-60) today announced the sponsorship of S5153-A that reduces premiums for physicians and midwives who complete a risk management strategies obstetrics course to better educate women on all options regarding labor and delivery.

This increased education is intended to improve women’s safety, birth outcomes and to promote informed consultation between women and their doctors during pregnancy.   

“Today I sponsor a bill that is designed to help women become better educated on the options available for labor and delivery including factors to be considered, potential benefits and risks.  Having a baby is a very exciting time for every family but there also are a lot of very important decisions to be made.  This bill will enhance a women’s ability to make an informed decision about such options as cesarean delivery thus improving birth as well as maternal and neonatal outcomes,” said Senator Mark Grisanti- Buffalo.

Cesarean delivery has been shown to create a higher risk for death of the mother, a longer recovery time and operative complications as well as a higher rate for stillbirths in future pregnancies and respiratory problems in newborns.  Yet even with these statistics, cesarean births have increased worldwide as well as in the United States.  Since 1970, the percentage of cesarean births in the US has risen from 7 %to 32 % in 2007.  In New York City, the average rate of births by cesarean in 2007 was 32 % with one hospital at 45% and in Westchester County the average rate for that year was 43 % with one hospital at 53%.  Elective cesarean deliveries whether for convenience or vanity account for the main rise in these rates.

“To promote informed consultations between women and their doctors or midwives, the medical provider needs to have up-to-date information regarding the considerations and concerns that should be taken into account with every available option.  This bill, which increases education of doctors and midwives with the carrot of a reduction in insurance premiums, will help patients make informed decisions regarding their labor and delivery,” said Senator Mark Grisanti.

S5153-A amends the Public Health law to allow an eligible physician or licensed midwife that completes the approved course to receive continuing education credits and a certificate of completion.

The new course, which may be completed in person or online, will include information on the potential benefits and risks of elective or non-elective induction, neonatal impact of late preterm births, and the trials of labor and vaginal births after a previous cesarean birth, elective or repeat cesarean births.

An amendment to the Insurance Law will create a premium reduction for an insured eligible medical provider who receives a certificate of completion of the risk management strategies in obstetrics course.