Finding the right care provider for you can really make or break your pregnancy & birth, not to mention the fourth trimester and your mindset afterwards!
1 in 3 women in Australia experience childbirth trauma and it’s no surprise when you see the majority of women are not receiving continuity of care. Let alone being paired up with care providers that match what sort of support and birth the woman wants.
I believe the care team you choose to support you during this life-changing time is one of the most important choices you can make in your Motherhood Journey.
Below I share some of my tips on how you can find the right care team to support you!
What kind of birth do you want?
It’s up to you to discover and decide what type of birth you want. Before you can go any further in working out who the best care provider is for you, you really need to understand the kind of birth support you want.
Take some time to visualise the kind of birth that you want. Write down how it makes you feel, who is in the room with you, is it busy or is it peaceful & quiet?
- Do you want a planned c-section?
- Do you want to have a natural vaginal birth?
- Do you want to have a medicated vaginal birth?
- Do you want to be induced before your due date?
- Do you want a Homebirth with a midwife?
- Do you want a Homebirth (without any medical support) Known as unassisted or free birth?
Once you have visualised the kind of birth you would like to have you can then pick a care provider who will best support you to achieve that birth.
Where do you want to birth?
As a birthing woman, you have many birthing options available. You can research and feel into what option feels right for you!
These are not listed in any particular order.
Birth centres operate with the belief that, for many women, pregnancy and birth is a normal life event requiring little intervention from health professionals.
If you have health insurance (or can afford to pay the up-front costs), you can choose a private hospital, or attend a public hospital as a private patient, for the birth of your child.
If you decide to have your baby at a public hospital, your doctor will give you a referral. The hospital you are referred to will be based on where you live. You may have a choice if there is more than one hospital in your area.
Giving birth at home is usually only an option if you are deemed to have a low-risk pregnancy—discuss this with your midwife as every private practice midwife will have different options available.
The main advantage of home birth is that you will be in familiar surroundings that you may find more relaxing & you be able to birth without many of the interventions you can expect to find in a hospital setting.
Care Provider Options
Often pregnant women can be left without the full picture on who they can have as their support team during pregnancy & birth.
It may be that all of our friends or family did it a certain way so we were not aware of any other options available to us. It can surprise many expectant couples when they find out there are quite a few support options available.
Of course, the kind of care provider you choose will also normally dictate where you birth as some can only support you in certain situations.
Midwifery Care – you can have midwifery care inside a hospital setting or choose to have a private practice midwife who can support you to birth inside a hospital or in your home for a homebirth.
Obstetric care with an OBGYN – you can find a private obstetrician who will support you to birth in a hospital or you may end up in obstetrician care through a public hospital if you are high risk.
Unless you decide to birth in a public hospital you will find that some of these options come with a cost and may require you to have private health insurance. You will need to discuss these costs and options with each care provider.
It is also important to note that a midwife is trained in vaginal birth, whereas an Obstetrician is a trained surgeon.
For example: If you are wanting a c-section it may be the best option to seek out a highly recommended Obstetrician.
Find someone who believes and supports you
When finding the right care provider for you it’s important that you feel comfortable with them and their style.
You want to be able to feel safe and heard.
If you are planning a vaginal birth find out what the c-section rate of the hospital is and your care provider. This will be a great key to finding out just how supportive they are of vaginal birth.
In Australia where we have a high c-section rate of 33% where the World Health Organisation recommends a rate of no higher than 10 to 15%.
You can change care providers!
At 36 weeks I was kicked out of the hospital I had been booked into. Nothing had changed.
My risk factors were all the same and my baby and I were healthy. The only difference was that they didn’t accept what I told them to begin with and they were using fear mongering throughout the entire time I was showing up to my appointments.
Which meant I had high levels of anxiety and I didn’t feel safe or feel I could trust the care providers I felt forced to see.
When I went to a different hospital the way I was treated was so much better. Even though they recommended similar courses of action. I felt respected, heard and understood during my antenatal appointments.
If you find that the care provider you are with isn’t the right one you can advocate and find a new one!
YOU HAVE GOT THIS!
This is your journey and you deserve to have the best care available to you!
Let me know if this article has given you some new ideas or helped you decide the best care provider for you!