Exclusive Breastfeeding

Elective Deliveries

As you may know, the Antelope Valley Hospital achieved designation as a Baby Friendly hospital last year.  I was taking a look at the Joint Commissions 2014-2015 report for Antelope Valley Hospital recently and thought I would share with you some of the findings.


According to the report, the rate of mothers who exclusively breastfed their babies BY CHOICE was 70% – which is just barely above the state average but over 20 points below the hospital with the highest rate.

The rate of mothers who exclusively breastfed was 64%.  Meaning 64% of the mothers who indicated no previous choice to breastfeed their babies did so exclusively – no formula.  However, out of all the mothers who wanted to breastfeed exclusively, only 70% did so.  For some reason, 3 out of 10 mothers who wanted to breastfeed didn’t.

The breastfeeding numbers exclude babies who were not able to breastfeed for medical reasons, such as being admitted to the NICU.  The total number of eligible patients included who breastfed exclusively whether or not by choice was 1,730.

Elective Delivery

An elective delivery is performed for a nonmedical reason. Some nonmedical reasons include wanting to schedule the birth of the baby on a specific date or living far away from the hospital. Some women request delivery because they are uncomfortable in the last weeks of pregnancy. Some women request a cesarean delivery because they fear vaginal birth.

If we read the data correctly, we’re to believe that the number of women who had an elected delivery (cesarean, induction, etc) for absolutely no medical reason is zero.  The report states the elective delivery rate is 0%. The total number of eligible patients included who were included in the elective delivery rates was 124.

What’s Missing?

The AV hospital “welcomes more than 5,400 babies a year through its Women & Infants Pavilion” yet only 124 of those were eligible patients for an elective delivery.  I’m not sure exactly what the implications are but it would appear that for some reason over 5,200 women were not included in those numbers.

Additionally, out of 5,400 babies welcomed at the hospital, only 1,730 were included in the breastfeeding data.  Again, the breastfeeding data does not include babies who were not able to breastfeed for some medical reason.  That leaves 3,670 babies, or 68%, who were not able to excursively breastfeed out of medical concerns.