This is it…..the last posting we’ll ever have to make about preventing stillbirth! You see, I just figured out how to get some attention to the matter and motivate the healthcare industry to get with it! It goes like this……
So – I’m going to win the $640 million dollar power ball tonight. I’ll take the $19M/year payment option and then I’ll put out a challenge. The first 10 hospitals each year that go all year without a stillbirth get a million dollars. THEN the first hospital that goes 5 years without a single stillbirth will get $50 million dollars! I will stipulate that the physicians contributing to the effort at these hospitals will be given half of the money as long as they use it to improve prenatal care in their practices and hospital.
You see – this is a brilliant idea because this will surely get hospitals and obstetrical providers to step up to the challenge. You can bet that the lucky patients of obstetrical providers and hospitals accepting the challenge will get the best prenatal care that medicine can buy. Ever wonder why you rarely if ever hear of celebrities having stillbirths? They buy the best care available. For the rest of us we are left to let the insurance companies dictate what we can do to save our babies. Only two ultrasounds in a routine pregnancy??? WHY – because some insurance actuarial decided that the expense isn’t worth it. Seriously – they aren’t THAT expensive. Think about how much change takes place in the uterus between the last ‘routine’ ultrasound at 20 weeks and the day that baby is delivered – the way it is now, we have no real clue about what disaster may be looming in there because we don’t look. We don’t do urine cultures every trimester? Routine pregnancies don’t get biophysical profiles and nonstress tests. We don’t evaluate the health of the placenta throughout the pregnancy. The list goes on and on. Just ask any Mom who has delivered her rainbow baby what the difference is between the care she received in her ‘routine’ pregnancy and the care she received from that point on. Mom’s shouldn’t have to pay the price of having a stillbirth in order to ‘earn’ the best prenatal care available.
Medicine in the US has exceptionally good outcomes in the case of high risk pregnancies when unlimited ultrasounds and other exams and tests are included. It’s the ‘routine’ pregnancies where we have poor outcomes. EVERY PREGNANCY SHOULD BE TREATED AS HIGH RISK – PERIOD!
I could go on and on about the way that health insurance has taken so much decision making away from healthcare providers. This is just one example – but it is absurd. We could talk about the difference in what a stillborn child costs an insurance company versus what a prematurely born child costs. Any wonder why prematurity gets plenty of attention?
Ok – there is just one problem with my plan. I haven’t purchased a lottery ticket…….gotta go……. See you on the news!
Wishing you abundant blessings (and me the winning lottery ticket),