Never Underestimate The Power Of Women


An excellent piece in HealthLeaders further cemented what we already know: women are the coveted decision-makers in healthcare. But the data behind the article exposed a bigger question for hospitals: What are you doing about it – really?

According to the latest study from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality:

  • Conditions related to pregnancy and childbirth were the reason for more than 1 out of every 5 female hospitalizations in 2007.
  • When combined with stays for newborn infants, these hospitalizations accounted for 1/4 of all stays.
  • Maternal discharges increased 16% from 1997 to 2007, and infant hospitalizations jumped 21% in the same time.

The writer wondered if those who are laser-focused on heart or orthopedic or cancer programs may want to re-look at how they approach women’s and children’s services.

Yes, despite the volume, the average hospital cost for pregnancy, childbirth and newborn conditions are lower. But, they remain third highest overall.

And, we’re not just talking about OB. When pregnancy and childbirth stays are excluded, women still accounted for more stays than men—18.2 million stays vs. 16.2 million stays.

How should that affect strategic priorities for healthcare providers, now and in the coming years?

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