How do I decide where to give birth?
The first question is where you want to give birth. You can give birth at home, in profit managed by midwives or in the hospital.
To ponder your choice you will need to evaluate:
- Where do you live
- Your needs
If you don’t have any particular health problems or pregnancy complications, you can consider any options. For women with some medical conditions, it’s safest to give birth in hospital, where specialists are available. This is in case you need treatment during labour.
Wherever you choose, the place should feel right for you. You can change your mind at any point in your pregnancy.
There are several ways to get this information.
- Call the hospital directly and ask to speak to a childbirth educator.
- Ask the doctors or midwives you are considering as assistants.
- Talk to nearby friends or family who have recently given birth to get their opinion on things.
- Check with the hospital’s maternity services. In many cases you can check directly on the hospital website.
- Talk to other childbirth or doule educators in your community.
Find out what’s in your area
You can ask your midwife for advice on the options available in your area. If you are ready to travel, you can use this service anywhere.
You can also get more information from:
- The Birthplace study – published in November 2011
- Your GP surgery
- Local maternity units
- Children’s centers
Can I choose the hospital where I’ll give birth?
Another key point is understanding which area hospitals are covered by your insurance plan. This to avoid discovering a mid-pregnancy that your doctor or midwife operates in a hospital not covered by your insurance.
The choice of doctor and midwife is very important, as the hospital where you will deliver your baby will also depend on this. Before choosing the doctor or the midwife, we recommend to make sure that the policies and approach to the birth of the hospital meet your needs.
If you have to rely on a doctor who has more admission privileges, we recommend that you find out about how the place where you will give birth is chosen.
What if I want to try a VBAC?
If you have before given birth by cesarean section and this time you want try a vaginal post cesarean delivery (VBAC).
Make sure that:
- The hospital allows it and your doctor performs it
- Hospital has medical staff available 24/7 to repeat the cesarean immediately if needed
Are hospitals the safest place to give birth?
We recommend that choose an hospital with a neonatal intensive care unit, especially if you are at high risk of preterm delivery or other complications that could affect your baby. Make sure the ICU is equipped to take care of younger children.
What if I want a hospital birth in a more low-tech environment?
Some hospitals have on-site birth centersin addition to traditional labor and delivery suites. Birth centers offer the option of giving birth in a more relaxed environment, often with amenities like a whirlpool tub for you and a comfortable lounge for family members.
If you need to be relocated for any reason, if, for example, you decide you want an epidural, you’ll have to move down the hall or onto a floor or two.
Additionally, many hospitals are equipped to support low-intervention labor care if desired, while also providing a safety net in case extra medical care is required.
Can a hospital turn you away while in labor?
No. According to the federal Emergency Medical and Labor Treatment Act, emergency rooms are not allowed to turn away a woman in active labor.
What is the most common way to give birth?
There Are Only Two Basic Birth Methods:
- Caesarean section: A cesarean section, or cesarean section for short, is a surgical procedure performed when vaginal delivery is not possible. Sometimes, a caesarean section is scheduled in advance, other times, the doctor may switch to the caesarean section during a vaginal birth if problems arise. The process is pretty straightforward. This is an incision through the abdomen and uterus to reveal the baby. The whole process can take up to two hours and will require a few days in hospital.
- Natural vaginal delivery: Vaginal birth is the natural one and occurs when the baby is born through the vaginal canal. In fact, around 68% of women give birth vaginally each year. In addition, vaginal delivery reduces the risk of your baby developing breathing problems, asthma, food allergies and lactose intolerance. This doesn’t mean it’s risk-free. The baby can experience physical trauma while passing through the birth canal such as bruising, swelling and, in rare cases, broken bones. Complications during labor can also lead to further problems if not properly managed.