For some women it is the most exciting part of their pregnancy. For others it is the most stressful. Either way, the early on in pregnancy you must make the decision about where will you give birth and who will care for you (be your caregiver). This is the first of a series of blog posts focusing on these questions.
Choosing a Caregiver
Usually the caregiver and the place of birth go hand in hand. However, there are separate considerations for each.
First, there is the decision about seeing a Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM), an OB/GYN physician, a family doctor, or a Certified Professional Midwife. We recommend this article from Childbirth Connection on the differences between those.
We like to talk about this choice in the context of paradigm we often use: safe, satisfying, Sseamless.
- Does the caregiver practice in a way that is consistent with the best available research on safe and effective care?
- Is your caregiver able to properly assess your risks in pregnancy? Evidence shows that over-intervention, especially for low-risk mothers, does not produce ideal outcomes. On the other side, women with more risk factors for pregnancy do require the proper care.
- Is your caregiver committed to helping you achieve the most satisfying outcome for your pregnancy (which for most women is a spontaneous vaginal delivery)?
- Does your caregiver make you feel comfortable?
- Does your caregiver’s philosophy about pregnancy and personal style match your own?
- Does your caregiver have a plan in place if you want or need to transfer care before or in labor?
- If you see a group rather than an individual, does that group have unity in mind and demonstrated teamwork so that the care is seamlessly provided by all caregivers?
At the Minnesota Birth Center, we designed our care in order to match all these three ideas.
We believe firmly in evidence-based care, relying on the best research available. The best research available currently shows that low-risk women get the best care and have the best outcomes when cared for by midwives (see the Milbank Report on Evidence-Based Maternity Care). Based on this research we want to ensure the safest birth possible, especially by assessing your potential risks in pregnancy. This is done by our Certified Nurse Midwives and by our medical director is Dr. Steve Calvin, a obstetrician who is a maternal-fetal medicine specialist.
We want you to feel comfortable. Our birth center is homey, clean, and inviting (see photos). Our staff is friendly yet professional. And we are committed to helping you have the most satisfying birth, which is a normal, natural, spontaneous vaginal delivery.
Most pregnancies are normal, but complications do arise. This is not a failure but is actually part of the natural process of pregnancy as well. That’s why we have a built-in process and an established relationship with an OB/GYM group should your situation necessitate additional medical care before or during labor.