Questions to Ask a Midwife

“I went to Karly for prenatal care and the birth of my first baby. She is extremely experienced and is calm and effective under pressure. My experience during pregnancy and birth would not have been the same without her! As a health professional myself, I feel that Karly is really passionate about her work and genuinely cares for her clients. I'll definitely miss being under her care for pregnancy, birth, postpartum purposes but am looking forward to going to her for well woman visits!

- Janey

If I don’t know

my options,

I don’t have any.”

- Diana Korte

If we want to find safe alternatives to obstetrics, we must rediscover midwifery. To rediscover midwifery is the same as giving back childbirth to [families]. And imagine the future if surgical teams were at the service of the midwives and the [families] instead of controlling them.”

 

- Michel Odent

Congratulations on choosing to have a midwife as part of your care team! Choosing a midwife can be an easy or challenging decision. You may already know the perfect midwife or have a sea of options. Here is an extensive list of questions. Read over the questions and decide which ones apply to you, your situation, your desires, and the type of midwife you’re looking for. We recommend interviewing several midwives. After meeting them and asking your questions, what is your general feeling? How does your partner feel? A good sign would be connection, feelings of excitement, trust, and calm. Uneasiness, trepidation, or uncertainty are good clues that you should continue looking or ask more questions. Trust your intuition!

General

How long have you been practicing?  

How many births have you attended?

What are your credentials? *Qualified Teams

Do you take continuing education classes?

Do you have a solo practice or practice with other midwives?

Is your practice involved in the local birth community at all?

Do you have resources for me to connect with other families/parents?

How many planned births do you accept per month?

If you are not available when I go into labor, who is your back up?

What is your overall philosophy on pregnancy, labor, birth, and the postpartum period?

What do you feel your role is as a midwife?

Where do you attend births (hospital, birth center, home)?

How do you feel about water birth?

Are you available by phone or email for questions?

What are your fees? Do you offer payment plans? Accept insurance?

Postpartum Care

How do you feel about delayed cord clamping?

What postpartum care do you provide? When? How many appointments? Home visits or office visits?

Do you offer newborn screening? Do you require it?

Are you comfortable with me declining newborn medications and procedures like immediate bathing, Vitamin K, Newborn Screening, eye ointment, circumcision, vaccinations?

If I deliver at a birth center, how long would I stay after the birth?

What is your postpartum visit schedule?

Will you offer breastfeeding/chestfeeding support?

How do you screen for and support parent with postpartum mood disorders?

Can I continue to see you for well-person visits?

Labor & Birth

At what point in labor do you prefer to get involved?

When would I call you?

When do you do vaginal checks during labor?

What type of monitoring do you do during labor? How often? For how long?

Do you routinely use an IV or saline-lock?

Are you comfortable having a doula at the birth? Do you have doulas you recommend?

Are you equipped in neonatal resuscitation? How often do you refresh your training in this area?

What equipment do you bring with you to a delivery?

In what situation would an episiotomy be performed?

If a labor stalls, what is the process?

If my water breaks, is there a time limit to when I need to deliver by?

If I had to be transferred to a hospital, what would be the process? Who would drive me? Which hospital would we transfer to? Would you go to the hospital with me? Would you stay with me through the birth?

Can my partner catch the baby? Can I catch my own baby? *Stronger Bonds

Well Person Care

Can you perform my PAP testing?

Can you order STI testing for me?

Do you offer physicals?

Have you supported care for trauma survivors? How does it change your care?

Can you educate me about contraception options? Can you provide me a prescription?

Prenatal Care

How often will I have appointments scheduled?

What will happen during each appointment? *Full Maternity Care

Who can attend my appointments with me?

What is your philosophy on weight gain, nutrition, prenatal supplements, and exercise?

What factors would risk me out of your practice? How will you help me prevent these? When would I have to transfer to an OB?

Do you have/use a fetoscope? *Low Tech, High Value

Do you require the use of dopplers?

Do you typically do vaginal checks during prenatal appointments? When?

Do you recommend/require ultrasounds? When/how many?

What is your hospital transfer rate? What is the typical reason for transfer?

What screenings and tests do you recommend? Which ones do you offer in house vs sending me somewhere else to get?

Have you ever worked with someone diagnosed with gestational diabetes? How does care change?

Do you have any concerns about big babies being birthed naturally?

What is your view on VBACs (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean)?  What is your success rate?

If my baby is breech before delivery, what would you recommend we try?

What testing do you do after my due date? Starting at how many weeks?

How long after my due date can you provide care for me?

Do you have any vacation/trips planned during the month of my due date?

© SeeMidwives 2019