Choosing the ‘best fit’ care provider for your pregnancy and birth will be the most important decision you make to work toward reaching your goal of a positive and safe birth. Don’t settle for just anybody. Shop around, and make sure that who you choose is supportive of your wishes and image of an ideal birth.
Below is a checklist, so you can interview care providers to see if they are the ‘best fit’ for you.
What is your philosophy of birth?
Are you supportive of natural birth?
How much choice do you feel I should have in the decision-making process?
What is your caesarean rate?
What percentage of your patients are high-risk, and what percentage are low risk?
What prenatal tests and screenings do you recommend, and when?
What is your induction rate?
At what point after 40 weeks would you be recommending induction of labour with drugs?
What is your criteria for induction? (medical risks like preeclampsia or diabetes, two or more weeks past your EDD, not to fit into their schedule)
Would you be happy to negotiate on this time frame and monitor the baby and placenta to give me the best chance of going into labour spontaneously?
How do you feel about vaginal breech birth, and do you support it?
What is your view on artificial inductions versus natural methods of induction?
What is your recommendation on vaginal examinations before and during labour?
What are your thoughts on electronic monitoring, and when do you think it should be used?
What do you recommend for discomfort in labour?
Do you practice solo, or are you part of a group?
What happens if you are not available for my birth?
Do you have a replacement & who would that be?
Do you have any holidays planned?
How do you feel about other support people being there at the birth?
What are your views on directed pushing versus mother directed breathing & bearing down to birth.
What will you do to reduce the chances of tearing or an episiotomy?
Do you see any increased risk of special complications or conditions for my pregnancy?
I want to have a non-medicalised birth. I want a care provider that will only suggest intervention if there is a medical reason & will support my natural birth wishes. Are you the best person for me?
Will you listen to me and respect my choices?
How can I contact you if I need advice?
How much weight should I gain, and at what rate?
What foods do you suggest that I avoid? What kind of diet do you recommend?
Are there any exercises that I should avoid, and how much exercise is safe?
When is it not safe to fly in an aeroplane?
Are there any activities that I should avoid?
What over the counter medications can I take that are safe?
What over the counter medications should I avoid?
Are my prescription medications safe?
What prenatal vitamins or supplements do you recommend?
What pregnancy symptoms can I expect, and how should they be treated?
Are my symptoms all normal?
When should I be calling you?
What do I do when labour starts?