Mothers are departing hospitals too soon after childbirth, study finds

Women the world over are leaving hospitals too soon after delivering a child, according to a new study appearing in PLOS and covered by Reuters.

The World Health Organization recommends new mothers should stay in the hospital for a minimum of 24 hours after delivery. However, the multinational study that examined women from 92 countries found up to 83 percent of new mothers, depending on the region, do not complete that stay. The study also found 75 percent of new mothers are leaving hospitals too soon after cesarean-section delivery.

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While the study can't explicitly determine the quality of care the women received, researchers wish to develop a deeper understanding of postnatal hospital stay times in pursuit of quality measurement.

Oona Campbell, PhD, of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, told Reuters that while long hospital stay times carry the increased risk of infection, "On the other hand, you want them to stay long enough to make sure they're not bleeding, the baby is feeding and the baby isn't jaundiced...so there are a lot of reasons to want the stay to be long enough."

More articles on quality: 
Study sheds light on safety and efficacy of malaria treatment in pregnant women 
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Rural hospital closings spell trouble for pregnant women

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