Background In France, one in five women gives birth by caesarean section and in almost half of cases, caesarean section is planned. Elective caesarean is a subject of controversy (some indications, maternal request) and its practice is marked by highly disparities in the country.
Objective To improve the relevant practice of elective caesarean.
Methods In a short time, an integrative process was developed with systematic reviews, working group of multidisciplinary health professionals and patients, focus group, implementation network.
Results For serving the identified needs, we updated guidelines, developed information for/with the patients, and produced implementation tools adapted to the different medical indications. Clinical situations which may lead to a planned caesarean section are varied and complex. For each of them, we redefined the indications of caesarean section or vaginal delivery. For elective caesarean, women should be informed as soon as possible, with provided developed tools, to enable an informed discussion with the caregiver and to improve the maternal experience. The decision elements to report in the medical record were defined and a set of tools with the approach ‘patient journey’ developed: clinical pathways, evaluation criteria of relevance or grids, examples of improvement actions and indicators. In February 2013, more than 183 establishment of health were engaged in the programme.
Conclusions We provided a set of implementation tools to improve the relevance of planned caesarean section. The continuous feedback by the different actors will allow enriching electronic version tools and sharing knowledge in the field, thus enabling a continuous improvement process.
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