April has traditionally been Cesarean Awareness Month. It was started by the International Cesarean Awareness Network (ICAN). The goal of this month is to bring awareness to the many issues surrounding cesarean section including vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC). This is accomplished by sharing stories about personal experience positive and negative with cesarean birth, discussing how cesarean birth can be more family-friendly, a look at the rates of cesarean section and VBAC, and general interest articles for the whole gamut. The official hashtag is typically #CAM20XX where XX is the year, so #CAM2019.
So, how should you cover Cesarean Awareness Month? That depends on what’s going on in your area. Here are some common topics birth professionals use:
- Cesarean and VBAC rates for your local hospitals or state
- Changes in cesarean birth locally, for example, are doulas allowed in the OR, do they have clear drapes, etc.
- Birth stories from people who have had cesareans
- Cesarean Birth Planning/VBAC Birth Planning
- How a doula can help you have a VBAC or how a doula helps during a cesarean
Be sure to listen to the next episode of The Birth Geeks Podcast. I’m going to take you on a historical tour of why the VBAC rate is so low and why induction and VBAC are considered a no go. Drop us a comment and let us know what you’re talking about in this month. In the meantime, here are some tools to use:
- State Cesarean Rate Dashboards
- Safe Prevention of the Primary Cesarean
- What’s the Deal with Cesarean? (Infographic)
- VBAC – Yes, it’s an option! (Infographic)
You can use these in blog posts, in your social media, or even in local events. This is a great time to reach out to like-minded organizations and offer to come to talk for even 15 minutes about some topic around this month. Think about hosting a book review talk at a book store, or a how to plan a VBAC at a local ICAN meeting, how a doula helps at a cesarean or how a doula lowers the risk of a cesarean at a local parenting group – there are many options.
Here are some products that may contain affiliate links but might also be useful: