Santa Clara Valley Medical Center & St. Louise Regional Hospital Recognized for Reducing C-section Births

For Immediate Release   
December 16, 2019
: Joy Alexiou
408.885.4164  or  408.595.2936 (cell)


  • Over 500,000 babies are born in California each year.
  • Overuse of cesarean sections (c-sections) can result in higher rates of complications like heavy bleeding, blood transfusions, infections, blood clots, and a longer recovery time compared with vaginal birth. Risks for babies include potential injury during surgery, breathing problems, neonatal intensive care stays, and lower breastfeeding rates. 
  • Santa Clara Valley Medical Center and St. Louise Regional Hospital met California Health and Human Services targets aimed at reducing c-section rates in first-time mothers with low-risk pregnancies.  

Santa Clara County, CA. – Santa Clara Valley Medical Center and St. Louise Regional Hospital made the State of California’s Maternity Honor Roll, which recognizes hospitals that met or surpassed the statewide target aimed at reducing births via c-section in first-time mothers with low-risk pregnancies. The Honor Roll started in 2015 and Santa Clara Valley Medical Center has made the Honor Roll every year since its inception. 

“We are proud to be on California’s Maternity Honor Roll for reducing c-section rates for first-time mothers,” commented Sue Kehl, RN, Director, Acute Inpatient Care, Santa Clara Valley Medical Center. “By reducing these rates, we are reducing the potential risk of complications during childbirth for both mothers and babies. It takes a team effort and our physicians, nurses and support staff are very committed to ensuring our mothers and babies receive high quality, compassionate and safe care.”

Childbirth is the number one reason for hospitalization in the U.S. and California. In California, there are 500,000 births each year (one-eighth of all US births). In the past decade, the c-section birth rate has risen by 50% nationwide. Today, one-third of all babies are born via surgery — significantly more than the federal Healthy People 2020 goal of 24.7% for low-risk deliveries. This upward trend is seen across all demographics.

Overuse of c-sections matters because, while often lifesaving in limited circumstances, the surgery also brings serious risks for babies and mothers. Also, once a mother has had a c-section, she has a greater than 90% chance of having the procedure for subsequent births — leading to higher risks of major complications, such as hysterectomy and uterine rupture. 

Since the launch of Healthy People 2020, the California Health and Human Services Agency has recognized hospitals that meet the 24.7% statewide target through its Maternity Honor Roll. The award reflects the most recent hospital discharge and birth certificate data from California hospitals that offer maternity services. 


News Release


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