|View Poll Results: Which of the options, as described in my post, would you choose?|
|Option #1: Good, close, midwife-run birth center (with doula if I choose) BUT with below-average hospital 20 minutes away as backup||15||83.33%|
|Option #2: Good, close hospital from the very beginning; doula comes along, but no midwife or jacuzzi||3||16.67%|
|Voters: 18. You may not vote on this poll|
1) Birth at a nice birth center with good midwives. Actual water birth is not possible, but a private jacuzzi can be used during labor, you can walk around, eat and drink whenever you want, etc. The midwives seem very sweet and the birth center has a good reputation. I may or may not bring a doula to this birth center, per my own choice. It is a 10-15 minute drive from my house depending on traffic.
The downside to this is that, in the case of a medical problem or a perception on the midwife's part that labor is not progressing quickly enough (they say there are no timelines, but it's about how the labor is progressing), my husband would have to drive me about 20 minutes to a hospital that is not well rated. Its numbers, on a government website I found, are only a little below average, but it got horrible reviews on Google (for E.R. and billing department; no reviews for maternity). The midwife from the birth center would come along. (Until recently, there was the option of going - even walking - to the good, close hospital mentioned below, but that is no longer possible for patients of this birth center.)
2) Just start from the beginning at a better hospital, again about 10-15 minutes from my house. Hire a doula, but otherwise have a traditional OB/GYN, hospital birth. I have been to this hospital for non-birth procedures before, and liked it. It is also better reviewed on the government website, and a little better on Google, as well. Its general reputation in the community is good. There would be no jacuzzi, though I don't yet know the rules about walking around, eating, etc.
Feel free to give a written answer, and/or just respond to the poll. I don't need anyone to use the poll if they'd rather type something out. Thanks.
I'm familiar with your area. I would choose the birth center -- it's excellent and they will go with you and advocate for you if you are transfered. In a true emergency, my understanding is that you're still going accross the street to the hospital you like.
All of that said, if you are really concerned (and I have the feeling you are given the number of posts you've written on the subject), have you thought about looking at the other options in the area? For example, the Pennsylvania hospital midwives and their birth center. Delaware is a bit of a schlep, but they're a great group. It's probably better that you're comfortable rather than walking into it this concerned about the "what if"s, KWIM?
Getting back to your original question, given the c-section rate in our city and the very interventionalist OB culture, I'd stay with a midwife.
wife to DH, new mom to 7/4/2011. .
"I remember my mother's prayers and they have followed me. They have clung to me all my life." -- Abraham Lincoln.
Mama to five babies. The newest one made her debut 7.10.12!
I'd go with the birth center given those choices.
Also, I am not sure I'd rely too heavily on govt and google reviews that are not specific to Labor and Delivery. Johns Hopkins is not far from me, and it is widely regarded as an excellent hospital in multiple areas. However, its not a place I considered for birth after speaking to several doulas who attend tons of births, because it doesn't have the type of flexible L&D policies I was looking for (I wanted no IVs, eat & drink at will, move around at will, use of warm water (shower or tub) for pain management, intermittent monitoring). The hospital where I delivered my daughter is not nearly as well known, but I heard multiple accounts from doulas and other moms about how the L&D department was supportive of natural birth and had more flexible policies. (And in my experience it definitely was). I'd recommend asking other naturally-minded mamas and doulas about the L&D experiences at the places you are considering. I wish you all the best as you decide.
Mom to DD born March 2010, and someone new March 2012
Thanks, guys. I, oddly, do not share the common dread of C-section, but if the birth is going to be natural, the amenities of the birth center do seem better so far. I am touring the "good" hospital maternity ward soon, to help make my final decision.