When choosing the right primary care provider for you and your baby you can ask several questions to help establish if the doctor/midwife’s philosophies align with your own.
Where do you deliver babies?
Doctors deliver in hospitals. In Alberta midwives may attend homebirths, hospital births, or work within a birth center.
Will you be the one who attends my baby's birth? If not, who will?
In most cases doctors share call within their practise. You can expect that some one on their team will attend your baby's birth, depending who is on call. Many of our local midwives work within a partnership or two person team. Much like our on call system here at Chinook City Doulas, you will meet with both of the midwives regularly and can expect that one of them will attend your birth.
What routine tests, appointment schedule, and procedures can I expect throughout my pregnancy and postpartum period?
How often will you see you care provider? When and how many ultrasounds should you expect? When will you have internal exams? What other tests will you have?
What options do you support for my pregnancy and birth?
You may want to consider whether specific tests are optional, what your doctors protocols are for labor, birthing positions, medication, induction, and more. If you have strong feeling about a specific procedure you should bring it up now.
How will I be supported for feeding?
Ideally, your primary care giver is comfortable supporting all types of infant feeding and can provide you with the support you need. In hospital, you will receive some support from the postpartum nurses and be referred to the staff Lactation Consultant should difficulties arise.
Further, you can expect a visit from the Postpartum Community Care team who will connect you to a Lactation Consultant, if needed. Midwives may have different levels of support they are comfortable providing. You can also have a Labour Doula or Postpartum Doula to provide private support, in addition to the medical care you receive.
Choosing the right primary care provider for you, your baby, and your family can have a significant impact on your birth experience. Choose some one you feel comfortable with, that you can talk openly to, and who’s opinions you trust.