Does number of births matter when hiring a midwife? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 02-04-2014, 06:21 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I am interviewing a couple of home birth midwives. One has attended 230 births, I am not sure if she was the primary midwife on all of those. And the other has attended over 900. I really like the experience of the midwife who has attended more births, but she charges 2x as much as the other midwife. I met the first midwife yesterday and she was very nice and calm, and I really liked her. I haven't met the other one in person yet. 

So, does the number of births make a difference in who you would hire?

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#2 of 10 Old 02-04-2014, 06:43 AM
 
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Well, no. I think one would want a good connection with your midwife. TO be able to trust her and have a good rapport back and fourth. Although, experience is important too.


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#3 of 10 Old 02-04-2014, 06:58 AM
 
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It would only matter to me if one had, say, 20 births and the other had 900. I think that 230 births seems like a lot of experience so it wouldn't dissuade me. I'd still meet the other one though, you might find a really great connection with her. 

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#4 of 10 Old 02-04-2014, 08:06 AM
 
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Yes, absolutely experience matters. Many obstetrical complications, I.e. Dystocias or hemorrhages occur only in a small percentage of women, particularly low risk women. I'd also ask at how many births was she the primary attendant. A home birth midwife needs to be competent and practiced at emergency skills, and someone with only 230 births may have seen only one dystocia or performed only one full on resuscitation, if that. I say this with respect and support for women choosing home birth, but without immediate back up resources, a midwife truly needs extensive experience. I also feel that midwives should work in pairs, does either one have an assistant?
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#5 of 10 Old 02-04-2014, 08:06 AM
 
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Double post. Sorry.

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#6 of 10 Old 02-04-2014, 08:26 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Both of them come to the birth with one or two additional assistants.
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#7 of 10 Old 02-09-2014, 06:36 PM
 
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Okay - the deal with numbers is that with such a low number she may not have practical experience handling certain commoner complications. I would ask both midwives whether they have dealt with dystocia, PPH, second degree or greater tears, chorio, meconium, suspected eclampsia, cord issues and neonatal resuscitation protocols.

230 is less than half that of my cousin who is still a resident and thus practicing under supervision.

I support homebirth that meets the qualifications set forth in the AAP's 2013 policy on homebirth.

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#8 of 10 Old 02-10-2014, 06:23 AM
 
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The number of births does matter, as does a lot of other factors. Are the assistants coming totally green and inexperienced students? Or are they other midwives? Are these numbers as primary midwife or are they including doula births? How do they practice and which one do you feel like is more competent and matches best with you? To me, the number would matter, but it is not the only thing that matters. I know midwives with soooooooo much experience, but who have a very different practice style than I would be looking for as a mother. So, if you tend to be on the more conservative end of things when it comes to risk assessment, then it would be good to find someone who matches that vs. someone who is so liberal with practice guidelines that you would feel like you were free-falling and vice versa. 


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#9 of 10 Old 02-10-2014, 06:59 AM - Thread Starter
 
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To update, I went ahead and went with the midwife with the lesser amount of births. Turns out that she was trained by the more experienced midwife, and the more experienced one had great things to say about her. She said she is one of the best in the area. So I feel much more confident in my decision now after hearing such a great review.

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#10 of 10 Old 02-11-2014, 12:54 AM
 
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A trusting connection is important, I mean that's why you are choosing this route anyways.

I don't believe experience makes you a better midwife, it just makes you more experienced. This women with 230 births could be a better midwife then the one with 900. Definitely do not even think about pricing, that will mess with your instincts. Can you put a price on the safety of your baby and your life? Go with your gut.

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