A couple days after finding out that we were expecting, I put in an application to have a midwifery care. Midwives are in such high demand in Ontario, Canada that you have to apply right away. I waited 3 weeks to hear the news that they were full but would keep me on the wait list. I was very disappointed. Then yesterday, at 20 weeks, I received a phone call and they offered me a spot! I won’t cancel my obstetrician referral until we have our anatomy scan just in case I’m deemed high risk (in which case I would need an obstetrician for care). As it stands, I wouldn’t meet my obstetrician until 31 weeks anyways. I now have my first appointment with my midwife on December 11th, I’ll be a day shy of 23 weeks. Unless there are major complications, here are the reasons why I’m choosing a midwife instead of an obstetrician:
– wouldn’t meet them for the first time until 31 weeks.
– it’s more a rare thing that your obstetrician will be the one who delivers your baby. It’s whoever is on-call that night that does the delivery.
– for the hospital that I’d deliver at (it’s a teaching hospital), there’s likely to be a lot of students in the labour and delivery room with an obstetrician.
– would get to know my midwife much sooner, I’m only seeing them at 23 weeks due to being accepted later than usual.
– the midwife that I get to know over the course of my pregnancy will be the one who delivers our baby. I will also get to know another midwife who is back-up in case of emergency with our primary midwife. This way, both Derek and I would have met and gotten to know whoever will be with us during labour and delivery.
– when labour begins, the midwife will come to our house and be with us until it’s time to go to the hospital. this helps a women to labour at home longer. my friend went for a walk with her midwife while having contractions before going to the hospital!
– the postpartum care for mother and baby can’t be matched. within 24 hours of going home from the hospital, the midwife will come to the home to see how things are going. no need to bundle up a baby (ours is due beginning of April) to get them to a potentially germ filled doctor’s office right away. we’d receive postpartum care for 6 weeks after birth, then be discharged to our family doctor.
-midwifery service is covered by OHIP, meaning that there’s no additional cost to choosing a midwife over an obstetrician.
After listening to various friends experiences with obstetricians and midwives, we are thrilled to be given the opportunity to work with midwives. The research shows a large decrease in c-sections when working with a midwife vs. an obstetrician. I love that the philosophy behind midwifery care is one of wanting to empower women to be active members in their health care. I also appreciate that many who have used a midwife have told me that their midwife felt like a very good friend.
Midwifery care may be very different in Canada than in the US. And experiences in regions could vary. This post isn’t meant to put down anyone who delivers with an obstetrician (we are so lucky in Canada to have great health care!). Rather, I hope this post may help others who also may be trying to decide which route to take.
Have you used a midwife? Considered it? I’d love to hear any thoughts from you!