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Dr. Aschner said no one is recommending trying to delay childbirth for women who go into labor at 37 weeks or 38 weeks.

“I don’t want to panic moms whose babies come at 37 weeks,” she said. “But those elective early deliveries really need to stop.”

Some hospitals including Vanderbilt require obstetricians planning elective C-sections to complete a checklist and if appropriate boxes aren’t checked, the operation can’t be performed, she said.