Hospitals and health systems participating in a Virginia collaborative to reduce early elective deliveries, which can increase health complications for babies, reduced non-medically necessary deliveries before 39 weeks of gestation from 8% to 1.3% over the past four years, the Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association announced yesterday. “Through this collaborative effort, Virginia went from being middle-of-the-pack among states on early elective delivery rate to the lowest in the country,” noted VHHA President and CEO Sean Connaughton. In 2012, the AHA Board of Trustees adopted a formal position supporting policies to eliminate early-term, non-medically necessary deliveries. Hospitals participating in the AHA/Health Research & Educational Trust Hospital Engagement Network reduced early elective deliveries by 61% between December 2011 and December 2014, and 44% in 2015 and 2016.