Medicaid will change rate S.C. hospitals are paid for C-sections (copy)

A federal initiative called Healthy People 2020 aims to reduce c-section rates among first-time moms to 23.9 percent by 2020. 

Seven South Carolina hospitals up and down the coast have been named Blue Distinction Centers for Maternity Care by the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association for having achieved lower-than-average cesarean section rates. 

The national C-section rate is higher than 30 percent of all first-time mothers who give birth. The average among all Blue Distinction hospitals is 23.7 percent. 

Along the coast, those hospitals include:

  • Roper St Francis Mount Pleasant Hospital, Mount Pleasant
  • Colleton Medical Center, Walterboro
  • Trident Medical Center, North Charleston
  • Bon Secours-St Francis Xavier Hospital, Charleston
  • Waccamaw Community Hospital, Murrells Inlet
  • East Cooper Medical Center, Mount Pleasant
  • Medical University Hospital, Charleston

Experts agree that C-sections increase the likelihood of medical complications. They also cost more. 

"For commercially insured Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS) members, the average cost difference between vaginal and cesarean deliveries was $4,157 ($13,325 versus $17,482), according to a Blue Cross Blue Shield Health of America Report," a press release about the Blue Distinction program explained. 

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VA hospital hires new leader

The Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center recently announced it hired Todd Williams as the hospital's new assistant director.

Williams previously served as chief of facility management services at the Washington DC VA Medical Center. He is a graduate of the Air Force Academy and was stationed overseas during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.

“We are excited to have Todd on board here in Charleston,” Charleston VA Director and CEO Scott Isaacks said in a press release. “His expertise, veteran status and experience in VA is an asset to our executive leadership team and we look forward to his leadership adding to the quality health care we provide to the veterans of the Lowcountry.”

Reach Lauren Sausser at 843-937-5598. 

Lauren Sausser is the Features Editor at The Post and Courier. She also covers health care issues in South Carolina.

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