Alone and Pregnant in Hong Kong -- Midwife and other Recs? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 7 Old 07-22-2009, 06:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My cousin just moved to Hong Kong and just found out she is pregnant -- she is in a bit of a panic with no friends (other than her husband of course) and no idea where to search out good pregnancy resources. Anyone out there live in Hong Kong or know enough about it to point her towards some mothering-y possibilities?
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#2 of 7 Old 07-23-2009, 08:32 AM
 
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I live in Hong Kong and may be able to help a bit. The birth culture here unfortunately, kinda sucks. She basically has two choices for pre-natal care and delivery. Private or public. Private doctors get you in to be seen quickly, the care is excellent and quite personal and you deliver in one of two hospitals. The Adventist or Matilda. They are like resorts really. Nice big rooms, some with a balcony, 5 star food etc. You work with a midwife but a doctor will still be present for delivery. They are pro natural birth there and seem to try to stick to somewhat a midwifery model of care, but it's pretty watered down from what I understand. You pay for 3 days of post-partum care and everything you use, you pay for. A lot of people go this way here and people rave. If something goes wrong however they will transfer to a public hosptial that is better equipped. The down side- It is friggen pricey!!! Way out of what we could afford unfortunately. If this is the way she wants to go she needs to get into a doctor asap to put her name down for a bed. After about 8 weeks you go on a waiting list and don't find out until about week 35 if you get in or not.

Public is the other way to go. As long as she has a hong kong id, it is pretty much all free. The appointments work kinda strangely it seems. First you go for a registration appointment. Paper work, weigh, measure, pee, blood pressure etc is checked. Registration is wednesdays no exceptions. Then you are assigned a day for appointments. If you're due on a Tuesday, all your appointment will be on a Tuesday. Apparently some people have managed to change it, but it was with tears and begging.
Everyone on that day has the same appointment time and so it pays to go early and get in first. You wait in line, get weighed, go out and wait again, blood pressure, go out and wait again etc etc. It is a different doctor each step so it feels a bit like a conveyor belt. The hospital is top notch, but not very friendly, touchy feely. They are big on external fetal monitoring, labour augmentation etc. I do know people that have gone natural, but it was with quite a fight. Have her check that her hospital will allow her DH in the room as I've heard there are a few that do not, but that is changing. People are masked for delivery I understand and they take the baby for an immunization immediately so if she is against that she should be extremely clear and forceful about it. I don't know anyone who has refused the shot so I have no idea what the reaction will be. Again it is three days in the hospital and you have to ask to room in with baby, be present for a bath etc.

It seems there are quite a few people who do a bit of both. Register and go to a few appointments in the public system and deliver in a public hospital but see a private ob/gyn as well.

Many people here will tell you that a homebirth is illegal and that is not quite true, but a midwife that is registered here cannot attend. There is a big midwifery practice here called Annerley, but they are really more of a doula than anything. They will come to your house and help you stay home as long as possible, make the transition to hospital easier etc. They also do post-natal care in your home and offer a wide range of childbirth classes. Again though they are not cheap. People rave about it and seem to think it is worth every penny.

If you can find a midwife that will travel here you can do a homebirth, but it is considered unassisted and you can have some issues with registering the birth etc. If that is the route she goes I would advise keeping to herself and say she is going home to deliver. It is not well received here but people do it and it is perfectly legal to do so.
This is the route I am going. It is still not a cheap option, but the best fit for us.

There is a website called geobaby that has lots of people that have done it both ways that can probably help more than I can. They also have a section for the different areas in hong kong so she can meet up with people in her area.

Pm me if you have any other questions for her.

: mama to my busy girl : in march
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#3 of 7 Old 07-24-2009, 11:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This is so helpful I can't believe it! My cousin was jumpin' for joy to have all this info. Will PM you.
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#4 of 7 Old 08-02-2009, 11:28 PM
 
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Although I don't live in HK, I did visit last fall and met up with Sarah Hung, the lady to heads up LLL over there. Perhaps your cousin can contact LLLHK english section for more information and moral support.

I too was shocked to learn that one must fight tooth and nail to have a natural birth and initiate breastfeeding with one's newborn.

Good luck to your cousin!

Sign hanging in Albert Einstein's office at Princeton: Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted, counts.
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#5 of 7 Old 08-03-2009, 09:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FelixMom View Post
Although I don't live in HK, I did visit last fall and met up with Sarah Hung, the lady to heads up LLL over there. Perhaps your cousin can contact LLLHK english section for more information and moral support.

I too was shocked to learn that one must fight tooth and nail to have a natural birth and initiate breastfeeding with one's newborn.

Good luck to your cousin!
I can't believe i didn't think of LLL myself! Great idea, will pass it on.
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#6 of 7 Old 02-28-2012, 11:01 PM
 
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Hello, may i know more info or reference for "a midwife that will travel here you can do a homebirth"?  i have done a natural birth for my 1st child in my home country and hoping to achieve the same in HK also.  Would very appreciate any of info that might help including how to get a bedding in a private hospital at this moment for a July born baby.  I called many places and they are all full!  Thanks!

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#7 of 7 Old 03-11-2012, 11:25 PM
 
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I live in China and have heard that in order to get a bed in the HK hospital, you must contact them IMMEDIATELY when you find out you are pregnant.  If you are contacting them with 6 months or less to go in your pregnancy, then it's too late.  

 

Midwifery is really misunderstood in mainland, and I would assume in HK too.  I was given a referral, but all the supposed midwife was going to do was tell me what to eat, do my laundry and remind when to go for my dr appointments, it is illegal for them to assist in home births...they can lose their licenses if they are found out and having a baby at home unassisted could cause a lot of headache with getting a birth certificate.  A hospital has to give you a birth certificate.

 

I would HIGHLY recommend a private hospital, as they are still pretty behind in their technology, but they are clean and quiet and should understand what a birthing plan is.  Because you are paying more, they will listen to your demands.  We have had to deny ultrasounds repeatedly along with medicine.  We are going to make a birth plan, stating that during labor to leave me alone (I had a friend who gave birth at this hospital and they did leave her alone), not to cut me, to put the baby on my belly after delivery and wait to cut the cord until it stops pulsating.  Also, stating we want zero immunizations.  I have had friends give birth at least in mainland and they signed a waiver and did not have to immunize their children.  Something to be aware of is that without immunizations, your child may not be able to go to local school.

 

All said, it is VERY different here.VERY VERY different.

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