Pregnancy comes with a ton of decisions to make.
Which do you choose first?
The Hospital or the Provider?
WOW. These are just a few decisions to expect when you are expecting and it was overwhelming to just type these out.
It has been said that "Doulas are experts in birthing options, not experts in clinical management.” So, since we as doulas have been deemed 'experts in options' we decided to break down your options when it comes to choosing a hospital and a provider.
You might have a connection with a personal GYN or you may have received a recommendation from a friend who had a baby with a specific provider. It is always comforting when a friend or family member gives a recommendation with glowing reviews. If she had a good experience, you will too. Right?!
You might choose an OB/GYN practice that includes midwives. A midwife is a trained health professional who helps healthy women during labor, delivery, and after the birth of their babies. You may want to choose a midwife if you are looking to have a natural birth with little medical intervention.
You may be attracted to an all female OB/GYN practice. Your labor and birth experience is a very intimate process. Some women feel more comfortable working with another woman as opposed to working with a male doctor.
You might decide to go to an OB/GYN that is known for the type of birth you are looking to have. Once you have established your philosophy about birth, you can look into a provider that has a reputation for the type of birth you are planning for.
If you are feeling like you still cannot choose your provider first, you might want to try choosing a Hospital first.
You might choose a hospital based on a recommendation from a friend or family member. Again, it is always comforting when a friend or family member gives a recommendation with glowing reviews.
You might choose a hospital that has features private rooms. Again, since birth and early parenting is an extremely intimate experience, you might be looking for some extra privacy .
You may choose a hospital that is natural birth friendly. Reference your birth plan for this. If you are looking for a specific type of birth experience, find a hospital that can facilitate it.
For example: If you are looking to have a water birth in the Hudson Valley, you might choose Hudson Valley Hospital Center. Each of the hospital's 5 labor and delivery suites is equipped with a whirlpool tub.
So back to the original questions. Which do you choose first? The Hospital or the Provider?
There really is no 'right' order. You can choose either one first.
Talk to your friends and see what their experiences were. Write a birth plan so that you can reference it when making these important decisions.
Need help with your birth plan? Want to learn about all your options? As you know, doulas are 'experts in options' and we can help!
Contact Northeast Doulas and learn how a labor doula can help you write your birth plan.