Several hospitals in Israel have reported record-breaking birth numbers, with maternity wards in most hospitals at capacity. It has reached the point that some mothers are being referred to other departments or simply delivering their babies in the hallway. The uptick in births is connected to rising fertility rates in general and the fact that there are significantly more births in the summer months, typically peaking in August.
Soroka Hospital in Beersheba broke its own record for births in a single month with 1,518 deliveries in July, eight more than July of last year and nearly 10% more than the average of 1,395 July births there over the past six years. The hospitals Ichilov in Tel Aviv and Haemek in Afula also set records.
At 3.11 children per mother, Israel has by far the highest fertility rate among members of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, which includes 34 industrialized nations. The OECD average is 1.7 children per mother.
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