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In August, Brazilian women strongly rebelled against cesarean birth method. They believed they had the right to choose the method they wished was best for them. About 50% of all births in the country are done through cesarean. Women are pushing for a change in the culture that has lasted for some years. The reason behind the high rate of cesarean is attributed to a longstanding interventionist strategy to vaginal births that makes them painful and stressful to many women. This has resulted to them opting for a C-section which is seen as painless, safe and an efficient way to deliver.

What was troubling most is the women’s change of heart on cesarean birth yet other women around the world prefer this method to a natural way of giving birth. The Brazilian women feel that the health care practitioners have magnified the challenges associated with natural birth to an extent where it is seen as a health problem rather than a natural process. It worries to realize that it is the doctors that prescribe which method a woman should give birth in. In most instances, women are put under cesarean birth method contrary to their wishes.

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According to Paulo Marinho, a medical director, some patients absolutely refuse to have natural childbirth. Most of them out of fear because of the challenges associated with natural birth. As for doctors, the issue comes down to economics and unpredictable vaginal births. A natural birth can take the whole day while a C-section takes 30-40 minutes yet the pay is almost the same. So doctors will prefer making more money through cesarean birth as compared to natural birth which takes a longer period.

The Brazilian government has responded by putting effective policies in place that are aimed at promoting natural birth. This is being achieved through conducting programs such as “The Stork Network” which is sensitizing mothers and health care practitioners on the importance of natural childbirth.

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