To Public Or Not to Public

29 Mar

Today I am + Day 25 (this is the day since ovulation and in my case the age of my embies/babies). My hCG tests today were very good at 12,308. Another test in one week and then my first scan in 10 days! I am so excited about the scan! This is when I may get an indication of twins.

I was told that I needed to book an Obstetrician (OB) in Sydney really soon if I wanted to have a say in who I had. WOW – I had no idea. So I set about researching. The obvious thing to do was to ask around and get some referrals which was helpful. Then budget of course played a big part. I have private health insurance but overlooked upgrading it to cover pregnancy. Brilliant! Some OBs were simply unaffordable regardless of their credentials. I just can’t afford to throw $10K at an OB.

I am also comfortable with the public system. It’s fine for many women so why not me?

I think because I am doing this alone I feel a great need for consistent support and continuity of seeing someone who knows what they are talking about. This therefore meant I had to look for some level of private care as it is expected that you see different OBs with each appointment in the public system. It’s basically whoever is on that day.

I have always been interested in water birth and would prefer to have a natural birth if possible so this was the basis of my research. There are not a lot of OBs who are comfortable with water birth delivery. A lot are happy to labour in the tub but they insist that birthing take place out of the water. (More about water birth in another post)

Yes, I am aware that they wont swim out of me looking joyful like this with bather bottoms on.

My research opened up a few other options which initially was just confusing but I am glad I stuck with it.

There are doulas and private midwives which you can engage to work with a private OB or go through the public system with you. Okay – so what is the difference between a doula and a midwife?

A midwife provides prenatal care, delivery of the baby, care of the mother post-partum and newborn care. The midwife is responsible for the safety of mother and baby. Some kinds of midwives also provide family planning and other kinds of well-woman gynecology.

Certified doulas do not provide any kind of medical care. For instance, they would not listen to the baby’s heart beat or do a vaginal exam or deliver the baby. They do provide emotional and physical support for the laboring woman and/or post-partum care.

Both sounded pretty good to me but I realised what I wanted was someone more hands on with the medical care so I narrowed it down to looking at a private midwife who would support water birthing.

After meeting with a prospective private midwife for nearly two hours on Monday, I was sold that this was the way I wanted to go. Tick! Private midwife, Melissa, booked and birthing plan underway. I trust Melissa and we have the same ideals in terms of birth. I also feel comfortable that she respects what is important to me. And really like her!

I wont try to explain Melissa’s philosophy as you can read about it for yourself here

Melissa is happy to go through the public system with me (RPA) though our plan is to stay at home as long as possible through the labour. This option is perfect for me. I look forward to sharing with you my experiences of this choice.

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