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N Z Med J. 2004 Nov 26;117(1206):U1177.

Obstetric regional analgesia services in New Zealand: a national survey.

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  • 1Department of Anaesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine, North Shore Hospital, Takapuna, Auckland, New Zealand.



To investigate the availability and pattern of obstetric regional analgesia services in New Zealand.


A postal survey of all registered obstetric facilities in New Zealand for year 2000 was carried out.


A total of 87 obstetric facilities were identified. Sixty-two percent of them responded to our survey, which covered 75% of all deliveries in year 2000. Numerous non-pharmacological and systemic analgesia modalities were widely available. Obstetric regional analgesia services were available in 20 facilities (38%), which provided obstetric care for 92.5% of all deliveries identified in this survey. Only the number of deliveries per year in a facility was associated with the availability of obstetric regional analgesia services (OR: 1.03; 95% CI: 1.01-1.06; p=0.03), not the location of the facility, whether in non-major urban or major urban areas. Among all the obstetric regional analgesia techniques that were available, patient controlled epidural analgesia (PCEA) was not widely used at the time of this survey.


Availability of obstetric regional analgesia services in New Zealand is very geographically focused, and appears to match closely with the distribution of obstetric deliveries in New Zealand.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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