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Birthing services in smaller communities

Making birthing services available in smaller communities

Birthing services are disappearing in small-town rural communities. At the request of the Ontario Maternity Care Expert Panel, Dr. Pamela Angle conducted research among physicians providing maternity anesthesia care across the province to explore the issues and barriers to services provision.

Angle’s report revealed many concerns. In small rural centres, there are often periods when obstetric anesthesia is either delayed or unavailable. Many of the local care providers interviewed described significant barriers to the uptake of best practices maternity anesthesia care.

The report offers short- and longer-term recommendations to increase the numbers of family practice and general practice (FP/GP) anesthetists serving these communities. Angle suggests the creation of obstetrical anesthesia networks that link university-based specialists in obstetrical anesthesia to both anesthesiologists and FP/GP anesthetists in community and small-town rural hospitals across defined geographic areas in the province.

Download the report in PDF format:

Anesthesia Services for Maternity Care in Ontario (189 KB)

Principal investigator:

Dr. Pamela Angle
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre