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    pregnancy delivery

    Things to Consider Before Choosing a Maternity Hospital

    • 16082 views
    • 4.5   (1 Votes)
    Medically Reviewed by Dr. Deepika Tiwari - MS, MBBS on 21 Dec 2018 - Written by Dr. Manju Dagar - DNB, MBBS - Grammatically Approved by Dr. Kavita Jaggi Agrawal - MS, MBBS

    Finding the right Maternity hospital is as important as finding the best gynecologist to handle your pregnancy. Factors such as the distance of hospital, NICU facilities, fetal monitoring standards, quality of lactation consultants, accommodation facilities and number of support assistants at the time of delivery, becomes utmost important.

    Choosing a health care provider for pregnancy should be done on the basis of the type of pregnancy whether it is likely to be normal and uncomplicated, or complicated and high-risk. If the expectant mother is younger than 18 or 35 years of age, have high blood pressure, diabetes, or a history of previous pregnancy complications, they should seek care from a health care provider experienced in treating women with similar conditions. One should make sure that the hospital has specialists taking care of daily decisions. 

    In this article we will look at things to consider before choosing a maternity hospital by answering the below questions.

    1. How far is the maternity hospital from your home?
    2. Does the hospital have Neonatal Intensive Care Unit?
    3. Do you have facilities for fetal monitoring?
    4. Are lactation consultants available? 
    5. How many people are allowed in the labor and birth room?
    6. What accommodations are available for the Mother?

    There can be many more questions based on your unique needs. It is important to ask these questions early in pregnancy. The childbirth educator or the doctor at the hospital can be a great resource for all of your questions. Below are the common questions to consider before choosing a Maternity hospital:

    1. How far is the maternity hospital from your home?

    The distance of the hospital from your place of residence is an important factor to consider while choosing the hospital. Choose a good hospital in your proximity where you can reach within half an hour even in peak traffic hours. This saves time, energy, money and reduces the risk of covering the distance or traffic woes when the baby is on the way. The closer the hospital is to your home, the more convenient it can be in case of an emergency as any delay during an emergency can be fatal and risky. Especially, if it is a high-risk pregnancy or premature deliveries in the past, a hospital close to home is important. After choosing the maternity hospitals, try to consider a route that has less traffic and good roads. 

    2. Does the hospital have Neonatal Intensive Care Unit?

    Call the hospital to make sure specialized care is available if the need arises. In case pregnancy is considered to be high risk or if the baby experiences any complications after birth, inquire if a hospital has an NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit). Make sure the NICU is also staffed with doctors and nurses who are specially trained for critical care. It is very important that the hospital has a dedicated nurse especially if a woman is delivering for the first time. If the desired hospital does not have an NICU on sight, choosing another maternity ward may be the best option. Along with choosing a maternity ward with a NICU, the specialized caregivers need to be available to care for the baby. These caregivers include a pediatrician that specializes in critical infant care and Neonatal Intensive Care nurses. 

    3. Do you have facilities for fetal monitoring?

    Make sure to inquire if the hospital provides fetal monitoring facilities. Express what level of monitoring you desire. Ask if there is fetal heart rate monitoring for checking the condition of the fetus during labor and delivery. Fetal heart rate monitoring can detect complications and also can help prevent treatments that are not needed. If it is a case of high-risk pregnancy or labor induced with medication an electric fetal monitor is necessary throughout labor. 

    4. Are lactation consultants available?

    If you are planning to breastfeed the baby, check with the hospital if they have any lactation consultants or experts. For first time mothers, it is very helpful to have a lactation guide who can help her through latching, breastfeeding positions and also provide other important information on breastfeeding. A recent study showed that mothers who are able to have skin-to-skin contact and latch in that first hour after birth have fewer breastfeeding challenges later. If you are not planning on breastfeeding, raise similar questions like if you want your baby to have a pacifier? Look for a lactation consultant if you are experiencing any nipple or breast pain, engorgement, sore nipples that are not improving, redness, pain or swelling in the breasts or anxiety about breastfeeding. You can get lots of practice for latching your baby on and learn how to tell when the baby is really latched, drinking, and swallowing. Most lactation consultants can answer any questions you have and assess any specific breastfeeding concerns. Ask if the cost of consulting with a lactation consultant is less or more. Hiring a private practice lactation consultant to work for you alone may be the best bet.

    5. How many people are allowed in the labor and birth room?

    Childbirth is an important event and presence of family members is very crucial before and during delivery. In case labor takes a long time or if any of family members want to stay back to assist you during labor and postpartum, ask if the hospital provides such facilities to accommodate them. Do you want a hospital that has single postpartum rooms, or are you okay sharing a room with another person? It is impossible to predict the outcome of any birth, but finding a hospital that makes you comfortable can have a considerable impact on the way you feel about your experience overall.

    6. What accommodations are available for the Mother?

    As technology advances, so do birthing procedures and techniques. Research the equipment and technology used at each hospital’s maternity ward, when choosing a hospital for your child’s delivery. There is always a possibility of the baby arriving one week early or two weeks late. So, check if the hospital has rooms of your choice or birthing suites are available during the due month. Some hospitals require patients to confirm months in advance before getting admitted there for delivery. An inquiry in advance helps to understand the patient influx and room availability. Also, check if private rooms are available in case you do not want to share rooms. Many hospitals provide birthing suites which can be used for both labor and post-partum. 

    If you would like to videotape the birth, inquire if such facilities or technology are available to assist with this request. Many hospitals also provide special lighting and music players that can help to calm you during delivery. Delivery experience will be greatly influenced by the hospital you choose to deliver in and how happy you are with the facilities and service they provide. Take your time to choose according to the requirements and expectations. After carefully choosing a hospital and doing your best to be prepared, try to relax and follow your doctor’s advice. The joy of becoming a mother is unending and one of the most beautiful things that happen in a woman’s life. If you are going to be a mother, then you should look out for a maternity hospital equipped with all the latest type of equipment and facilities in your locality. Ensure that the Obstetrician or Gynecologist is affiliated with a hospital that feels right to you. If that’s not the case, find a hospital that does, and then look for a new OB who practices there.

    Are you looking for good hospitals and doctors near you? Consult Elawoman today if you want to make the best decision for your pregnancy delivery. Elawoman consists of a team of expert professionals who can assist you while choosing the best doctor and facilities at an affordable cost. Call us at +917899912611.

    Dr. Manju Dagar

    Written by

    DNB, MBBS
    Laparoscopic Surgeon, Gynecologic Surgeon
    Gurgaon
    Dr. Manju Dagar is a gynaecologist and infertility specialist with vast years of experience. She has completed MBBS from Maharshi Dayanand University in 1997 and DNB from National Board of Examinations in 2009. She is a member of the Indian Medical Association and Association of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Delhi, Federation of Obstetrics and Gynaecological Societies of India. She holds her expertise in Natural Cycle IVF, Hysterectomy and Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection, In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF), Intrauterine Insemination. Dr. Manju Dagar visits W Pratiksha Hospital in Gurgaon. You can get the contact details of Dr. Manju Dagar at elawoman.com

    1 Comment

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    Omarjeet Sawardekar

    Dec. 21, 2018, 5:31 p.m. 4.5

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