Could a cesarean delivery delay - because an anesthetist was not readily available - have led to a baby's death this month?
This is what the Vancouver Island Coastal Health Authority will investigate in a review of the events that took place in a public hospital in Canada on August 9.
According to a doctor quoted in the Globe and Mail this week, “B.C. is the only province in the country that doesn’t have, in high-risk units, a dedicated anesthesiologist just working in obstetrics and nowhere else... “Everywhere else in the country, there is one available at a moment’s notice. “And things happen fast in obstetrics...”
I personally know of women for whom a planned cesarean birth was delayed
(and even denied altogether) because of anesthetist staffing issues, and while I hope that this is not the case here, if it does turn out to be true, I will not be shocked that this can happen - because I already know it does.