Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Hospital, Birth Center or Home Birth Part III

I went full circle, exploring alternatives to a hospital birth and in the end deciding to return to a hospital birth for a number of reasons. After some research and interviews of midwives, I decided that if anything were to go wrong - which in my case blessedly is a very low risk - the best place to be is in the hospital. While the risk is low of anything going wrong, the consequence of that risk is a huge risk that I am not willing to take. If something were to go wrong, I would never forgive myself that I did not go to a hospital. I say this knowing people that have delivered quite well in birth centres. Interestingly, one midwife, who not only had a wonderful energy, but seemed to very much know what she was doing (after all she has been delivering babies for 35 years), told me there was no positive in going to a birth center. If you want to be comfortable and around bacteria that are part of your normal environment the home is best, she argued. Otherwise, go to hospital. I wondered whether part of her reasoning, whether subconscious or not, was due to the fact that she performed births at home and supported births at hospital but did not have a birth center service to offer.

I met one midwife who has written texts on midwifery and trains midwives (but unfortunately does not perform this service any more) and she knew exactly where how my son was positioned from touch alone. The ultrasound a week later proved that she was spot on. My OB, whom I adore, could not do this. Albeit I believe that OBs generally don't do something that a machine can do for liability reasons. Midwives are just like any profession - some people are fantastic, some are mediocre and some are so inadequate and will probably end up being sued.

I was also pleasantly surprised to hear from midwives that my hospital was truly a very hands-off hospital that supported women having the most natural childbirth possible. Hearing this from my OB was one thing, but hearing it from midwives, whom have directly worked with the hospital, was much more reassuring.

In the end, I decided the best of both worlds was to labour with a midwife at home and have the midwife come to the hospital with me. She would not be able to deliver, but I would have the benefit of her expertise throughout. Unfortunately, this turned out to be the most expensive option and I declined to pursue this option as it would cost more than double I would pay by simply going to the hospital.

I was in fact mostly surprised at how much midwifery services cost. Giving birth at home or at a birth center was decidedly more expensive than simply delivering at my hospital (about $5000 extra). It could be that we just have fantastic insurance or that midwives, just like anything else in the Bay Area are just much more expensive as the market will handle the extra cost. They must also have high insurance premiums.

So it's back to me, hubby, baby, a birthing ball and a Hypno-Birth tape (more on that later) in the hospital room (and hopefully this time no Cervidil!).





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