Home News Hospitals punished for prolonged maternity care

Hospitals punished for prolonged maternity care

Published on 05/05/2015
Newspaper Het Nieuwsblad writes that penalties will range between EUR 200,000 and 800,000.

Remarkably, only 12 hours after she was brought into St Mary’s hospital in London, Kate Middleton appeared outside to show Britain its new princess. Not very long after, she and prince William already left the hospital and went home.

This was a real speed visit compared to the average Belgian woman. In our country, freshly new mothers are allowed to stay in the maternity ward for 4.5 to five days after childbirth. The Belgian government thinks the maximum duration of the stay should be shortened to 4 days. Hospitals who still allow women to stay longer, will risk a fund cutback up to EUR 800,000.

‘We need better home care’

Flemish Gyneacology Association Chairman Jan Bosteels is not against the new rule, but thinks that the government should see to better possibilities for home care after childbirth. If this is provided, the scheme should cut down expenses.

‘But right now, there isn’t a structure nor an organisation to monitor and support mothers in their own homes. Many young mothers are at the brink of a new life chapter. They have to deal with a lot of new challenges and problems, and it’s important that they’re counselled and supported throughout the process,’ explains Mr Bosteels.

Go home on the same day

‘Home care is already available,’ says Lies Versavel of the Flemish Maternity Care Expert Centre. ‘There are a lot of possibilities in Flanders for mothers who want to go home soon after childbirth. Nevertheless, we’re still a front runner in Europe when it comes to staying in the hospital after giving birth.’

Mrs Versavel’s message is clear, ‘People don’t have to stay in the hospital if there haven’t been any complications during delivery, and if the mother and her child are fine. In that case, she can go home on the day after or even on the same day as the childbirth, granted there are enough possibilities for home monitoring and care.’


Flandersnews.be / Expatica