Parents or parents-to-be are vulnerable consumers, same as everyone else. There are many unnecessary or unsafe products being marketed towards them. I do not have kids at this point in my life so I had never really thought about this issue, but in reading the articles there is a surprising amount of unnecessary practices and products being marketed to parents. For example, in the medical field, childbirth is stereotyped as this painful, scary process, but it is not always like that. There is also a pressure on women to do a cesarean delivery rather than a vaginal delivery, and most hospitals do not give them an option if they have done a C-section on a previous birth. Most women do not know that, I certainly did not before reading the articles. I always thought a C-section was only if it was really necessary, but I was surprised to find how common a practice it is these days for something that is not needed in most cases. There are now people who post videos of their childbirth process to show that there are other options, and that it is a common thing that there is choice in.
Another example of parent consumer vulnerability was shown in the article The Cord Blood Controversy by Jeannette Moninger. The article details the new fad of parents having their baby’s stem cells frozen on the idea that if the worst happened then the stem cells could be used to help save their lives. The Dones family chose to do this for their newborn, and when the newborn was sick and needed the stem cells, the stem cells were found to have the same genetic defect the baby had and were thus unusable. The cord bank never mentioned to the Dones family that the cells could be diseased. They were taken advantage of through false advertising and fraud in this situation.
I believe parents and pre-parents should have information available to them and someone to talk to about their options. Those giving birth should know that C-sections are not generally necessary, and that doing one could prevent you from other birth options in the future. They should know that there is an option of home birth or that Washington allows consumers to choose the services of a certified midwife if they wish. Parents should also be aware of the dangers of products and services, nothing should be taken at face value. Parents should look into a product and see what they are actually getting before they commit to it.
MacGregor, H. (2017). The birth of a trend: Posting childbirth videos online. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 23 October 2017, from http://www.latimes.com/health/la-he-birth-movies-20120809-story.html
Moninger, J. (2017). The Cord Blood Controversy. Parents. Retrieved 23 October 2017, from http://www.parents.com/pregnancy/my-baby/cord-blood-banking/the-cord-blood-controversy/
Roan, S. (2017). Birth options: More women should have choice of vaginal birth after C-section, panel says. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 23 October 2017, from http://www.latimes.com/health/la-he-0323-hosp-vbac-20100323-story.html
Walden, R. (2017). CDC and Consumer Reports Track Cesarean Birth Rates. Our Bodies Ourselves. Retrieved 23 October 2017, from http://www.ourbodiesourselves.org/2014/06/ddc-consumer-reports-track-cesarean-birth-rates/