In 2020, the number of childbirths in the HUS area increased by 204 (1.3%) on the previous year. We have four maternity hospitals: the Women’s Hospital and Espoo, Hyvinkää and Lohja Hospitals.

The birth rate in Uusimaa had been declining throughout the 2010s but now showed a slight upturn. There were 15,549 childbirths in 2019 and 15,753 in 2020, an increase of 1.3%.

The Women’s Hospital and Espoo Hospital between them had 81% of all HUS childbirths, nearly 13,000. The birth rate remained almost unchanged at these hospitals. By contrast, the number of childbirths increased by 4.7% at Hyvinkää and by 10.8% at Lohja.

“This was the first time in ten years that we have seen an increase in the number of childbirths. It is a moderate increase, but an increase nonetheless. It is very promising news,” says Seppo Heinonen, Director of Gynecology and Obstetrics at HUS. The total number of childbirths was clearly higher in the first half of 2020 than in the second half.

Chidbirths in HUS, 2019–2020

Chidbirths in HUS, 2019–2020

Read more: In June, the number of childbirths in the HUS region increased by 7.5% on the previous year. (in Finnish)

Multiple reasons underlying increase in childbirths

Maija Jakobsson, Chief Physician in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Hyvinkää Hospital, explains that it is not easy to identify all of the reasons underlying the increase in childbirths.

“What we do know is that the population in the municipalities of Central Uusimaa is definitely increasing. There are a lot of babies due this spring in Nurmijärvi and Järvenpää, for instance.”

Raija Räty, Chief Physician in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Lohja Hospital, reports that Lohja Hospital has invested in a social media presence. The maternity ward at Lohja Hospital opened an Instagram account in June 2018, and it now has more than 11,000 followers.

“We have been able to relate better to people of childbearing age through this channel that is familiar to them.”

Our other maternity hospitals have also opened Instagram accounts since then, the content reflecting everyday work at the hospitals and being created by midwives themselves. The maternity ward at Hyvinkää Hospital opened its Instagram account in August 2019, and the Women’s Hospital and Espoo Hospital opened maternity channels in August 2020.

In a relatively short space of time, these channels have gained thousands of followers. Customer feedback on the channel content has been positive.

“People of childbearing age expect public organizations to have a social media presence in channels that they themselves use on a daily basis. Over the past ten years, the birthrate has declined by so much that we are pleased to be able to create a positive image of having children and of childbirth,” says Johanna Laitinen, Communications Specialist at the HUS Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics.

HUS maternity hospitals in Instagram

Number of births, Women’s Hospital 2019–2020

Number of births, Women’s Hospital 2019–2020

Number of births, Espoo 2019–2020

Number of births, Espoo 2019–2020

Number of births, Hyvinkää 2019–2020

Number of births, Hyvinkää 2019–2020

Number of births, Lohja 2019–2020

Number of births, Lohja 2019–2020

Number of births, HUS, total 2019–2020

Number of births, HUS, total 2019–2020