Birth Doula
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Once you decide to hire a professional birth doula, you should interview prospective support persons carefully. Besides professional considerations, you will want to find out if the doula has values compatible with your own and personal qualities you desire. When choosing a labour assistant, answers to the following questions will help you find the right support person.

The Doulaís Beliefs

The truly important questions reveal a doulaís philosophy. It is most essential for your own satisfaction that you find a doula who completely supports your goals and attitudes. The way she answers the following questions may give you a good idea of whether you and she will be compatible.

bulletWhat do you think is the most important part of your job?
bulletWhat are the main skills or abilities you bring to the birth?
bulletWhat do you think the fatherís role should be during labour?
bulletHow do the doctor and the nurses usually react to your presence?
bulletHow do you handle a conflict with the medical team?
bulletHow do you feel about my doctor and my hospital?
bulletAre clinical skills a part of your role?

Practical Questions

Another group of questions involve practical details. Once you have found a couple of doulas who fit with your opinions, practical details will help you narrow down the choice even further. Or you may wish to ask these questions early in a phone interview, so you donít waste your time listening to the philosophy of doulas who will be out of town around you due date.

bulletAre you available around my due date (from 37-43 weeks)?
bulletAre there any limitations to your availability?
bulletHow long does it take you to get to me?
bulletWill you come to my home if I am in pain but not ready to go to the hospital yet?
bulletHow many clients do you take in a month?
bulletWhat is your back-up situation?
bulletWhat is your fee, and what does it include?
bulletWhat are your standard payment arrangements?

Protect Yourself

Finally, you should ask some questions about credentials. It is unfortunate, but true, that there will always be people who try to take advantage of others. At this time in your life you are especially vulnerable, and need to ask some hard questions and be prepared to do a little homework to protect yourself.

bulletWhere did you get your training, and how many hours did it involve?
bulletAre you certified? By whom? May I contact that organization to confirm your certification?
bulletHow long have you been practicing?
bulletHow many births have you attended as a doula?
bulletDo you have any additional training or licensing that you use in your practice?
bulletAre there two of your clients whom I may call?
 

 

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