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Maternity: Method of delivery

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  • Release date: 16 December 2015
  • Period covered: 2005-2015
An annual report which includes information on deliveries by caesarean section and induced births.

Key points

  • Around 6 in 10 deliveries are unassisted, a proportion which has fallen slightly since the mid 2000s.
  • The proportion of hospital deliveries by caesarean section fluctuated between 26 and 28 per cent over the past 10 years, standing at 26 per cent in 2014-15. An estimate of the national caesarean rate would include home and other births, making the Wales rate 25 per cent instead of 26 per cent (NCCHD 2014).
  • There has been a trend over the past ten years towards shorter hospital stays for all types of delivery.

In 2014-15, of all hospital deliveries

  • The percentage of older mothers (aged 45 years and over) having caesareans has decreased over the last ten years, from 67 per cent in 2005-06 to 58 per cent.
  • 36 per cent of mothers who had caesareans stayed in hospital 4 or more days, compared to 52 per cent ten years ago. (only) 12 per cent of mothers who had unassisted births stayed in hospital 4 or more days, compared to 11 per cent ten years ago.
  • 25 per cent of all deliveries in Wales were induced, compared to 19 per cent in 2005-06.
  • The principal recorded complication of labour and delivery was perineal laceration, recorded in 38 per cent of deliveries.


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