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Interviewing a Homebirth Midwife

Finding the right midwife to attend your birth is important. The area you live in may have several midwives to choose from or you may not have a selection at all. Either way, it is important to ask a potential midwife questions that will help give you comfort in her experience and knowledge. Asking these questions will help determine whether she is a good fit for your homebirth.

This list of questions is not exhaustive and you should ask any other questions you have during your pregnancy that cause you concern.

  1. What is included in the fees? What do I need to provide for a home birth?
  2. At what point in my labor will you come to my home to assist with labor/birth?
  3. How many births have you attended?
  4. What is your hospital transfer rate?
  5. What care would you provide to me if a transfer were necessary?
  6. What is your experience with home births after caesarean (HBAC)?
  7. How many home birth clients do you typically have in a four-week period and what is your plan if you have two clients laboring/giving birth at the same time?
  8. Have you ever handled a postpartum hemorrhage? What protocol do you use to stop excessive bleeding after delivery?
  9. Have you ever missed a homebirth? If so, what were the circumstances?
  10. Are you available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week during my pregnancy?
  11. Do you have a back-up physician?
  12. Do you require specific tests during pregnancy? (i.e. One-Hour Glucose Screen, Group B Strep, etc.)
  13. Do you allow a mother to go past 42 weeks and still have a homebirth?
  14. Do you require a childbirth preparation class to prepare for homebirth?
  15. What is your role during a birth?
  16. Do I need to hire a doula for labor support or do you provide that also?
  17. What equipment and supplies do you bring to a birth?
  18. Are you able to suture the perineum if necessary?
  19. How long do you stay after the birth? Do you help clean up?
  20. Do you provide post-natal visits in the days after the home birth?
  21. What is your standard for cord clamping and cutting?
  22. Will you use a fetal scope in place of a Doppler if requested?
  23. How many assistants do you typically bring to a home birth?
  24. If you are sick, who will attend me?
  25. Do you perform episiotomies? If so, how many have you performed?
  26. Have you had any bad outcomes with a mother/baby? Please explain them.
  27. Do you have experience breastfeeding? Will you be able to help me with any breastfeeding problems?
  28. What is your experience with herbs, homeopathy & alternative medicine?

 

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