supplies and equipment are used at a birth?
Most homebirth clients will purchase a birth supply kit before their
due date. It will include sterile, disposable supplies.
In addition, the midwife will bring the following equipment: resuscitation equipment, sterile instruments
(for clamping and cutting baby's umbilical cord),
a fetoscope and doppler to listen to baby's heart
rate during labor, supplies for perineal repairs,
and general support items. Some midwives are licensed to carry some medications.
if there is a problem during the labor and/or birth?
While there are many different types of situations
one can encounter during labor or birth, most midwives strive
to be as non-interventive as possible, thereby reducing
any risk of complications. Should
an issue arise, there is usually ample time to transport
to the hospital. Hospital choices and access should be
discussed prenatally, with the parents, taking into
consideration insurance coverage, physician relationships,
and general support / respect for homebirth families. Priority is always given to the closest hospital
for emergency transports. Once a client is transported to the hospital, most care providers stay
by her side helping her and her partner with decisions,
support and encouragement until her baby is safely
delivered and both mother and baby are stable. Postpartum
appointments then continue as normal, as well as offering
breastfeeding and parenting support.
about the mess?
This is the most common question we hear. Some people
believe birth is very messy. While there are fluids
such as amniotic fluid and blood involved, the mess
is often quite a bit less than the general public would
assume. Instructions are usually given prenatally on how
to make up a bed so that the mattress stays clean,
as well as precautions for floors and carpets, and
underpads are included in the birth kit to help
absorb fluids during the birth process. The average
birth generates a small waste basket of garbage
and leaves behind no evidence other than your sweet
we have family, friends and or siblings at the birth?
It's always up to you whom you choose to have attend your
birth. During prenatals and over the course of your
pregnancy, your midwife should discuss your concerns and hopes
regarding your birth, the atmosphere, and what is
important to you and your family.
happens after the birth?
You should be provided with immediate breastfeeding
support, and made sure mother and baby are stable, given
a newborn exam, checked for perineal tears and repaired
if necessary. By the time the caregivers have done all of
these things, generally 2-3 hours have passed since
the birth. Some women need more support and some women are glad to have their privacy after
an hour. Postpartum visits should commence on a regular schedule for from 6 to 10 weeks.
much do midwifery services cost?
As with nearly everything, the amount a professional charges for their services varies widely. Some midwives, especially new ones, might not charge anything and others could charge thousands of dollars. Many midwives will work with each family individually
to find a fee that is affordable and realistic.
I believe strongly that for anything to have value
and to be valued an exchange must be made. Often
it is uncomfortable to discuss financial matters
and because of that you should settle any fee
discussions during the first or second visit. If
you have special circumstances, be open and
honest about what your ability is to pay.