Media Advisory

Monday, March 27, 2006

NIH Holds State-of-the-Science Conference: Caesarean Delivery on Maternal Request, March 27-29, 2006

Just announced:
Reporters who are unable to attend Wednesday’s 2:00 p.m. press conference can call in by dialing 1-800-857-7003, and entering passcode 4948. This will be similar to a conference call, in which all callers can hear all questions and answers, and pose questions to the panel.

The press conference will be broadcast live via satellite at the following coordinates:

C-Band Galaxy 3C
Transponder: 21C
Orbital Location: 95 degrees west
Downlink Frequency: 4120 H
Audio: 6.2/ 6.8
Test time: 1:30 – 2:00 p.m. ET
Broadcast: 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. ET

All conference sessions and the press conference will also be webcast live at

What: An independent panel will weigh the available scientific evidence regarding the risks and benefits of Caesarean delivery on maternal request (also referred to as elective Caesarean delivery) on March 27 — 29. The panel will issue a statement of its findings on the final day and will hold a press conference at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 29. Convened by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Medical Applications of Research (OMAR), this 2.5 day conference is free and open to members of the public and the media.

Conference speakers’ presentations, open discussions, and the panel’s statement will focus on these questions:

  1. What is the trend and incidence of Caesarean delivery over time in the United States and other countries?
  2. What are the short-term (under one year) and long-term benefits and harms to mother and baby associated with Caesarean by request versus attempted vaginal delivery?
  3. What factors influence benefits and harms?
  4. What future research directions need to be considered to get evidence for making appropriate decisions regarding Caesarean on request or attempted vaginal delivery?

When: Monday, March 27, 2006, 8:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Tuesday, March 28, 2006, 8:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Wednesday, March 29, 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. 
Press Conference: Wednesday, March 29, 2006, 2:00 p.m.

Where: Natcher Conference Center
NIH Main Campus – Building 45
9000 Rockville Pike
Bethesda, Maryland 20892
Campus visitor information:
The conference will also be webcast live at

Why: The potential benefits of elective Caesarean delivery as compared to vaginal delivery are not yet fully understood. Both approaches carry risks and benefits, and any decision to deliver by Caesarean delivery when vaginal delivery is also available should be informed by the best possible information regarding potential health outcomes, good and bad, for both mother and baby. The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) and OMAR have planned the upcoming conference to stimulate a critical review of the available evidence and to identify directions for future research.

Background: The conference is sponsored by OMAR and NICHD, through the NIH Consensus Development Program. Two pertinent backgrounders are available at One introduces technical content to be discussed at the conference and another describes the features of the NIH Consensus Development Program.

For More Information: Conference agenda, speakers, logistics, and online registration are available at

To schedule interviews, please contact Kelli Marciel by e-mail at or by phone at (301) 496-4819.

Note to Radio Editors: An audio report of the conference results will be available after 4:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 29 from the NIH Radio News Service by calling 1-800-MED-DIAL (1-800-633-3425) or visiting

Note to TV Editors: The press conference at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 29, will be broadcast live via satellite. For satellite coordinates, see above.

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