How much should I expect a student midwife to charge?
Edited by Lingab - 1/29/12 at 8:24pm
I assume that she can not charge you anything....since she is learning. However, her supervisor (the real midwife) can charge the full price even if she doesn't attend birth.
now, these are my assumptions......I could be totally wrong.
I am planning to have a home birth, I have a team of 2 midwifes and a student midwife (I live in Ontario, Canada). Here, the government pays for all midwife expenses (I never see the bills), but I know that the student doesn't get payed. In fact, she pays some tuition!
Not sure what state you are in, but in my state, a student midwife cannot attend a birth as the primary caregiver without her supervising midwife present. It would be considered practicing without a license. Now if you called the regular midwife and she was on the way and the student got there first and your birth happened before the licensed midwife got there, that would be one thing, but to bypass the licensed midwife? Not sure on the legality of that wherever you live...
I stumbled across the blog of a California midwife who lost her license and nearly did prison time as the result of having attended a birth w/o her preceptor present, due to the preceptor being at another birth at the time. A shoulder dystocia occurred, which the SM apparently handled well with good outcome, and she also sutured a tear. Someone at the birth complained to the medical board, and shortly after the midwife became licensed, she was tried and convicted of the felony charge of practicing midwifery without a license.
On your end as the client, I would hesitate to get involved with a midwife who does not feel it's necessary to supervise her student.
my apologies ladies. I guess if I would have proof read what i wrote it would have made more sense. The midwife will be available by phone if the student were to arrive before her. The student is an hour closer to me than the midwife is. So obviously the student would probably arrive first. Since I have quick births the actual midwife may not be here before baby came. I didn't know if there were separate charges for a student and then the regular charge for a midwife.
You shouldn't have to pay anything additional to the student midwife. I'm guessing you need to pay your midwife, regardless of whether or not she makes it on-time (unless it's her fault, like she misses your calls for a whole day, or something). The student is there to learn, and, she may very well receive compensation from her preceptor depending on how seasoned of an apprentice she is - and their individual arrangement. That shouldn't have anything to do with you, financially, though.
As far as her being the only one there to catch the baby, if you labor quickly, well, IMO, it's better she is there over no one at all. It would be entirely different if the midwife were only sending her, with no plans to arrive as soon as she could. Even then, though, I don't see a huge liability considering there are plenty of midwives who were never even formal "students" at all; they may have been grandmothers or family friends, or lay midwives w/o years and years of experience. Of course, this may depend on the state regulations for where you live, and it's probable that the apprentice is supposed to follow certain guidelines as to when she can primarily assist or be completely on her own. You, though, as the birthing mother need to be sure you are comfortable with whoever attends to you. Just don't worry about an additional bill from the student, because that is super unlikely.
I have a similar situation of my midwife being 3 hours away and her student being an hour and a half. Mine is DEM so obviously we aren't concerned about legalities. I would assume you are paying a global charge- and that should include the student. For our last birth the student drove separately and was of course her and hour and half before the midwife got here. If the student would have caught DS it would have been fine with me and not have shown up on my bill :) If you are concerned- ask- but I am 99% sure you won't get charged any more- but also don't think it will be any less :)
Your student midwife should be free. But whether or not she is able to help you is her responsibility to find out if it is legal, etc. I think you should take some time to write down your questions and have a good long talk with both your midwife and her student and get some clarity. Then when you go into labor, call them both and birth your beautiful baby. The rest will just work itself out.