questions to ask a hospital? or what to look for? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 12-23-2003, 06:20 PM - Thread Starter
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since i've been horribly unable to locate a midwife or birth center anywhere close to where i live (and close is essential, because we have no personal transportation) -- i'm considering checking the local hospital out to see if i'd want to deliver there.

what should i look for?
what questions should i ask the staff?

should i -- or would a hospital even allow me to -- spend as much time there as possible and get comfy there if that's where i'm going to deliver?

(with my first baby, i had gone to the hospital for my regular checkup, and they realized i was in labor, whisked me up to the L&D ward, and the first time i saw the room/nurses/all of it was when i was in there to deliver my baby.)
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#2 of 7 Old 12-23-2003, 07:53 PM
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my thoughts are relating to things I found important IN the hospital....

1) Do you have to change rooms to labor and then deliver? Will you be moving around rooms a lot?

2) Will you have to room with someone or do you get a private room?

3) What alternative pain coping things to they have (tubs, showers, etc) and how and when do they let you use them?

4) What is their policy on how long you have to stay? How long the baby has to stay?

5) What is their policy regarding babies in the room? Do they MAKE the baby sleep in the nursery?

6) Who can visit you?

7) Do they have a lactation consultant on staff?

8) What are their hospital "rules" about eating/moving/drinking during labor?

9) What are the hospital "rules" about how long a woman can labor/when they MUST do a C/sec, etc etc.

10) What are their rules regarding the pediatician visit before the baby leaves?
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#3 of 7 Old 12-24-2003, 12:22 AM - Thread Starter
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thank you! some of those, especially 5, would never have occurred to me.

are there actually places still that make the child stay in the nursery??
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#4 of 7 Old 12-27-2003, 04:40 PM
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In my hospital, there were no babies at all in the nursery. There was a sign on the door saying "All babies are with their moms!" That was a good thing.

Also, they let my dh stay the entire time I was there, and they also fed him. Other hospitals kick husbands out at night.

We got a private room.

They had a jacuzzi but it was lame - it wasn't very deep, the pressure from the jets was wimpy, and the water didn't get hot enough.

Just some more things you might look at...
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#5 of 7 Old 12-28-2003, 01:39 AM
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I understand that personal transportation is a huge issue, but is it possible that you have options you haven't considered? A friend or neighbor or someone who could drive you or lend you their car? This birth is a one time thing, it's a circumstance worthy of a big favor.

Maybe your local hospital will be fine, but if it's not, I hate to think of women making unnecessary sacrifices due to convenience, y'know?

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#6 of 7 Old 12-28-2003, 04:27 PM
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Question #5 is the most important!

With ds1, the nurses did all baby related stuff in my room! The babies
never left unless mommy wanted them to. best ffriend has her baby in another hospital and whenever the nurses did a ''shift change" they took the babies for several hours so the new shift nurses could do all the routines. The mom had no choice but to let them take her baby for hours at a time several times a day. Definately something to ask!

Also, also ask how they protect the safely of baby i.e. during times when he/she is not in mom's room. Some hospitals are starting to do some pretty inovation stuff in making sure the baby is safe.

With ds2 I knew I was having a c/s and I asked for a tour of the labor/delivery to ease my tension. THey were awesome and showed me everything!!!! IMO if a hospital won't do that then a woman shouldn't birth there. KWIM?

I would also ask about baby problem policy. With ds1 he was born and the cord was wrapped around his neck. They wisked him away to the corner of the room to revive him, where they has a little baby station in place. I would have freaked out if they took him away to another room without me even seeing him. Now, i didn't ask about this beforehand but I sure was thankful after the fact that they did that''in room'' procedure right by me.
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#7 of 7 Old 12-28-2003, 04:56 PM
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I want to know what a hospitals view is on whether your baby needs to go to the nursery and if I can go with the baby to the nursery for doctor's visits, etc.

Also, I wanted to know about how they felt about my dh and ds staying the night. One hospital wouldn't even let my dh and ds tour because my ds was not 14 or older! The hospital I chose will allow my ds to be there during the delivery

I also like to know how much I will be moved during/after labor.

The first hospital I went to had showers across the hall with no facilities in the room other than a toilet and a sink! I felt like I was in a dorm.
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