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Maternal Request C-section through public system is it possible?

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  • Maternal Request C-section through public system is it possible?

    Hi all,

    I'm located in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne and am thinking of starting a family soon. I've known for many years that i would like to deliver via C-section. I do not have private health insurance however i do not believe that this should remove the right to autonomy over my own body.
    Has anybody been able to go through the public system without a 'medical reason'

  • #2
    You're going to be hard-pressed convincing an obstetrics team to preform major surgery - And on the public purse no less - with a 'It's my right' plea. I'm sorry to sound harsh but it's not your right. If you want major surgery without a valid medical reason then you should pay for it.
    I am not an early bird or a night owl.
    I am some form of permanently exhausted pigeon.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by MissTwiggley View Post
      You're going to be hard-pressed convincing an obstetrics team to preform major surgery - And on the public purse no less - with a 'It's my right' plea. I'm sorry to sound harsh but it's not your right. If you want major surgery without a valid medical reason then you should pay for it.
      Yep. This
      If you want a c section I suggest you take out PHI and then request it

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      • #4
        i’d put my case forward (worst case they say no, and likely will in the absence of a medical reason). but you never know. before ds was born (i had him in melbourne’s public system too) an ob i spoke to said they promote vaginal deliveries where possible and where it’s safe for mum and bub. i mean by all means plead your case, but be prepared to be refused.

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        • #5
          Depending where you live, going public you will be in a catchment for a particular public hospital I.e box hill or angliss as an example (I am eastern suburbs) based on this you could always check with your particular hospital.

          Like others have said, I don’t think your chances are high, however if you don’t ask you won’t know.

          If you are hard set on C section, suggest you take PHI insurance to ensure this.

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          • #6
            I experience anxiety around 'vaginal birth' and have friends/family whom have been left with permanent trauma physical and mental. I work in an industry where i also see the side effects of such trauma daily.
            I understand that a csection is a major operation which in its self carries risk however for me it is a controlled one.
            Thankyou for taking the time to respond but i have to disagree with 'It is not your right'. Women should have choice and control over their birth method especially if one causes stress this should not be dependant on financial circumstance.

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            • #7
              I would just discuss it with your team. Only they can say if they will or won't, however It's very likely being public unless you NEED one for medical reasons you'll get one.

              If you're 100% dead set that's the only way you wish to birth, you should probably take out PHI to ensure you get the birth experience you want. To give you the choice you want/guarentee you your right to choose.

              I have had 3 csections - because I HAD to, no complications from them, fast recovery, minimal pain....I've been incredibly lucky. However. I would give anything to have had a vaginal birth instead.

              It IS major surgery. It DOES still take a toll on you. There ARE extra risks - not just for you - also your baby. It could have breathing issues after birth because it wasn't delivered naturally among others, and need to go to Special care.

              Keep in mind you've just had major surgery so you can't just walk over and check on them. You can't see or touch them. You can't hold them, and if you intend to breastfed, you miss out on that first feed (very important) and instead will be hand expressing (or the midwife can).

              Be prepared that when there's no one around and if your baby is in its bed and cries, there's nothing you can do but buzz the nurse and sit and listen to them screaming unto they get there to you - because you can't just get up and pick them up due to the major surgery you've just had, the catheter that may still be in, wound drainage, iv, and whatever else you're hooked up to...

              Anyway... there are just a few things many people don't consider until they're there. It's not pretty, nor something I'd do by choice

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Gloss100 View Post
                I experience anxiety around 'vaginal birth' and have friends/family whom have been left with permanent trauma physical and mental. I work in an industry where i also see the side effects of such trauma daily.
                I understand that a csection is a major operation which in its self carries risk however for me it is a controlled one.
                Thankyou for taking the time to respond but i have to disagree with 'It is not your right'. Women should have choice and control over their birth method especially if one causes stress this should not be dependant on financial circumstance.
                I think considering your knowledge of post- birth injuries and anxiety around birth, you would have a pretty good case for requesting a c section.
                You may have to ask several times, or go to a board or similar to plead your case, but I don't think they can refuse on those grounds.

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                • #9
                  In my experience no, they won’t accept your request for a cesarean without medical reason- and mental health/anxiety is not classed as a medical reason. I suffered a postpartum haemorrhage following the birth of my 5th and as result was diagnosed with ptsd. When I fell pregnant with my 6th, I was also wanting my tubes done so I requested an elective cesarean. I broke down in my consult appointment because the thought of going through another vaginal birth terrified me so much- the doctors saw first hand how it impacted me. Add to that being my 6th and I was already classed as a higher risk of pph. They denied my request because it wasn’t classed as medically necessary (approved my tubal ligation though, but had to wait 3 months post birth for it).

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                  • #10
                    Maternal Request C-section through public system is it possible?

                    Originally posted by Gloss100 View Post
                    I experience anxiety around 'vaginal birth' and have friends/family whom have been left with permanent trauma physical and mental. I work in an industry where i also see the side effects of such trauma daily.
                    I understand that a csection is a major operation which in its self carries risk however for me it is a controlled one.
                    Thankyou for taking the time to respond but i have to disagree with 'It is not your right'. Women should have choice and control over their birth method especially if one causes stress this should not be dependant on financial circumstance.
                    whilst i completely agree with you in theory, i guess the economic practicalities are a little different. when medicare foots the entire bill, it becomes an issue of economy. the government simply can’t afford to offer every single woman a 4-5 night stay in hospital, surgery, anaesthetist, surgeon etc. should it? maybe. but will it, right now? unlikely.

                    if your heart is set on a scheduled cs, i would get phi with the obstetric cover. it’s the only way to ensure you get exactly what you want.
                    Last edited by turquoisecoast; 24-12-2020, 13:14.

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                    • #11
                      Women should absolutely have autonomy over their bodies, but asking for a c-section in the absence of a medical reason isn't just exercising a right to make decisions about your own body, it's also asking a doctor to perform major surgery which they in their professional opinion consider higher risk than vaginal birth. That is an ethical consideration for them and they are entitled to balance your reasons against the risk, they're not just guns for hire.

                      I'd say the thing to do is either take out phi, or speak to someone like the head of obstetrics at your public hospital now and clarify the circumstances in which they'd agree to an elective caesarean.

                      Eta: Your anxiety may well be reason enough for them to agree, you don't lose anything by asking the question. If you're not 100% decided another thing to be aware of is that good doctors are well-equipped to deal with anxiety around birth, the public system imo sometimes gets a bad rap, but like anything people's experiences vary.
                      Last edited by Kalina; 24-12-2020, 13:00.

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                      • #12
                        I had an elective c-section in a public hospital with my first baby (but it was 16 years ago now) due mostly to anxiety. I too posted on here and got very similar responses then, I still remember, ouch!

                        When I had my DD I didn't say anything to the midwives about it at all ever. I waited until the OB appointment between 20-30 weeks and spoke directly with the doctor. As soon as I started talking about it I was inconsolable. She said that's it we aren't into forcing mothers to give birth vaginally. It was signed off and I had my first baby by elective c-section at 38.5 weeks. There was a lot of lectures from people around me and the midwives (but the doctor had warned me of this). Then there was constant requests for mental health referrals.....which I wanted nothing to do with the at the hospital.

                        I was in hospital 3 nights and went home early morning day 4 as i had had enough being in hospital, I would have gone home the day before but I had a reaction to the medical tape from one hip to the other, which hurt more than the c-section wound. My baby was happy and healthy and is now a wonderful caring, mostly healthy 16 year old.

                        So I'm saying there is hope, things have possibly changed in 16 years but it is worth talking to someone about it.

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                        • #13
                          As a health provider i am going to agree with most that given there is no underlying medical requirement you will be hard pressed to get a public hospital to willingly perform a medically unnecessary proecure that puts you and baby at risk. If your heart is set on a C Section then i suggest taking out private heath as advocated by others already. To a point yes you should have autonomy over your body but not at the expense of the hospital when it isn't warrented. Not all private obstetricans will agree to a C Section either for non medical reasons and that is what makes them a good OB. I had asked with both of my kids due to physical limitations for a c section as first choice and waa encouraged not to. As a nurse yes i have seen the complications left from natural childbirth, i have also nursed numerous women coming in for repairs from prolapses caused by pregnancy not birth so remember having a c section does not prevent these things, prolapse and incontinece are pregnancy related not birth related. Have had patients ans friends with babies needing extensive time in nicu and scn post birth due to complications from a caeser birth and patients with non healing scars requiring hospitalization away from their newborn. Worst case scenarios yes but have to be acknowledged that a c section is major surgery and unless necessary not the advisable path to take.

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                          • #14
                            I'm with many of the others. You can try but is expect to be knocked back.

                            I'd expect they would prefer to be putting tax payers money towards a psychologist for the anxiety and education/physio etc.

                            When you think about the public system, if you want things done at the tax payers expense then you go on a wait list. Things like getting kids tonsils out etc you can be waiting like a year.

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                            • #15
                              Maternal Request C-section through public system is it possible?

                              Short answer, no. I asked for one because I wanted my tubes tied and was refused.

                              In the end I carried a large baby and then they offered me a c section because of higher complications giving birth vaginally so it was a medical reason in the end but I decided I couldn’t do it as I had two toddlers at home I had to look after and couldn’t sit around waiting to recover and instead accepted to be induced earlier. I’ve had four vaginal births and I’m glad I have never had a c section, don’t think that a c section doesn’t result in any trauma, I’ve had people say they’ve had issues with their scars etc didn’t heal properly and also experienced trauma.

                              it’s great to have the option of a c section for medical purposes, but a vaginal birth can also be really rewarding, the midwives have a lot of experiance these days, I think most people have high anxiety over giving birth naturally and what could go wrong but that’s normal!! Good luck with it xx
                              Last edited by MuMtORiLeYandLeO; 24-12-2020, 22:30.

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