If you choose a hospital birth – choose the best hospital! – Enjoy Birth {day 28}

If after researching all your options you choose a hospital birth, please take the time to research the different hospitals in your area.  Many moms pick their hospital because of convenience.  This hospital is closest to them, or it is where their primary care physician is a member.  If I suggest a different hospital, some moms tell me they feel it is inconvenient.  They seem to feel their birth hospital doesn’t really matter.

The hospital you choose matters immensely.

It is hard for me to express just how important the hospital you choose is.  Each hospital has different birthing “rules,” and those rules will affect whether or not your birth choices are honored.  There are four hospitals near me.  I would only recommend one of them.  Two are OK and one I would never go to-all because of their birthing rules.

I learn a lot about the hospital approach to birth by reading Labor and Delivery (L&D) nurses’ blogs.  At Rebirth’s blog I read about her experience caring for another L&D nurse from a neighboring hospital.

“This woman worked more years than I as a labor nurse but worked at a different hospital. The hospital she works at is known for some major old school obstetrics. This place still does routine episiotomies, tethers women in bed, elective inductions as early as 37 weeks, and even have a few doctors that will do maternal requested c-sections.”  (See link above)

Excuse me, did she say TETHERING a woman in bed?  Umm, yes and this post was written in 2009.  She goes on to explain how this mom was so surprised that

  • she was allowed to drink something – in HER hospital they don’t allow that
  • she didn’t have to get a vaginal exam – in HER hospital they require one every 2 hours
  • she could labor down (wait to push until she feels the urge) – in HER hospital moms must start pushing at 10 cm
  • she didn’t have to lie on her back to push – in HER hospital all moms with epidural push on their backs
  • she didn’t have to send her baby to the nursery – in HER hospital that is routine.

So where would you rather birth your baby

Rebirth’s hospital or her patient’s hospital?  Do you know what the routines in your hospital are?

ASK your hospital questions about their routines.  Go on the hospital tour, or call the L&D floor.  Be wary if when answering a question, your OB says it’s up to the hospital and the hospital says it’s up to your OB.  If they don’t even know who gets to decide, that would throw up some red flags for me.

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2 thoughts on “If you choose a hospital birth – choose the best hospital! – Enjoy Birth {day 28}”

  1. A great place to start in researching hospitals is comparing cesarean rates. The website cesareanrates.com has all the most recently published cesarean data that is currently available.

  2. I had a hospital birth and I couldn’t agree more! My hospital was fantastic and I thought they did a wonderful job – I had zero interventions (not even an IV!) and so many of their nurses were trained in lactation. Even my husband said hands down if we ever have another baby we would go there. Now, I live in a large metro area, so I have a LOT of hospital choices, but this is the one I would choose again and again. They respected every single one of my choices. When I was first admitted even, I labored overnight for 18 hours at 3+ cm and never changed in dilation and since my water hadn’t broken, they sent me home instead of messing with me. Like I said, I can not say enough positive things about my hospital. I had strongly considered homebirth because I really wanted an intervention free natural birth, but at the time we lived in a super tiny apartment and it already felt claustrophobic to me and the birth center near us doesn’t take my insurance and we could not afford to pay for it out of pocket, however, I did go on to have such a great hospital experience and I would recommend the same hospital to anyone who wants a natural birth experience.

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