Tell Bellevue We Want our Birth Center Back!

Please join the women and families of New York City, members of the birth community, supporters of informed birth choices, and advocates of social justice everywhere. Ask the Bellevue Hospital Administration to reevaluate the decision to close the only Medicaid-accepting Birth Center in Manhattan; the closure of the Birth Center deprives low-income women access to Birth Center care that is not only empowering and supportive, but proven to have better outcomes than hospital birth.
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We the undersigned, collectively voice our shock and dismay over the closure of the Bellevue Birth Center. We are saddened that the Bellevue Hospital Administration would take away the only Medicaid-accepting Birth Center in Manhattan. The administration closed the birth center despite the large demand for its services by the community and the outstanding outcomes the center delivered. This unilateral decision by the Bellevue Hospital Center - made without the input of elected officials, public health officials, or community stakeholders - was made without so much as an announcement, an explanation, or an offer of an alternative.

The Bellevue Birth Center provided many low-income women with an alternative to a hospital birth that is safe, comfortable, and family-oriented. A birth center, staffed with highly trained birth professionals, encourages a model of care that:

 - Has superior outcomes for mom and baby
 - Is more cost-effective
 - Reports extremely high levels of overall satisfaction with the birth experience
 - Demands the highest levels of respect for women's bodies
 - Provides continuous, hands-on support through labor and birth
 - Creates a warm, comforting, homey environment where the whole family can be present
 - Necessitates fewer Cesarean sections and medical interventions in the birth process - the Bellevue Birth Center consistently had a C-section rate of less than 4%, as compared to the city-wide average of 35% and more than 50% at some local hospitals!
 
The Bellevue Birth Center provided a standard of personalized and supportive care that is often lacking in a hospital setting. The closure of the Bellevue Birth Center continues a dangerous trend of removing options for women in their maternity care and leaves a gaping hole in birth center access for low-income women.

We expect more from our public hospitals and we urge you to reconsider. We call upon the Bellevue Hospital Center to re-open its birth center to the women of New York City who deserve equitable access to options in their maternity care.
We the undersigned, collectively voice our shock and dismay over the closure of the Bellevue Birth Center. We are saddened that the Bellevue Hospital Administration would take away the only Medicaid-accepting Birth Center in Manhattan. The administration closed the birth center despite the large demand for its services by the community and the outstanding outcomes the center delivered. This unilateral decision by the Bellevue Hospital Center - made without the input of elected officials, public health officials, or community stakeholders - was made without so much as an announcement, an explanation, or an offer of an alternative.

The Bellevue Birth Center provided many low-income women with an alternative to a hospital birth that is safe, comfortable, and family-oriented. A birth center, staffed with highly trained birth professionals, encourages a model of care that: 
  • Has superior outcomes for mom and baby
  • Is more cost-effective
  • Reports extremely high levels of overall satisfaction with the birth experience
  • Demands the highest levels of respect for women's bodies
  • Provides continuous, hands-on support through labor and birth
  • Creates a warm, comforting, homey environment where the whole family can be present
  • Necessitates fewer Cesarean sections and medical interventions in the birth process - the Bellevue Birth Center consistently had a C-section rate of less than 4%, as compared to the city-wide average of 35% and more than 50% at some local hospitals! 
The Bellevue Birth Center provided a standard of personalized and supportive care that is often lacking in a hospital setting. The closure of the Bellevue Birth Center continues a dangerous trend of removing options for women in their maternity care and leaves a gaping hole in birth center access for low-income women.

We expected more from our public hospitals and we urge you to reconsider. We call upon the Bellevue Hospital Center to re-open its birth center to the women in Manhattan who deserve equitable access to options in their maternity care.
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