OB/Hospital Choice

Choosing the OB and/or hospital labor and delivery department may seem like something you would rather just have happen.  “My OB is willing to work with us, so we are just staying here.”  “My OB referred me to the high risk group in the closest big city.”

If you need to “not think” about this decision, then disregard this page.  I offer this information so that every parent can maximize their time with their little one.  Having to deal with hospital policy issues or an obnoxious staff member when your little one arrives is not the best way to do that.  If you have been given the gift of time to prepare, I hope you will consider some of the things listed below.

Staff Experience

Hospital distance from your home

Attitudes of staff

You may be faced with an OB who feels it is best for you to terminate your pregnancy; you may be faced with an OB who does not wish to face death him/herself.  Whatever the reason, if you have an OB who cannot handle your choice to keep and love your baby until he or she dies naturally, then don’t fight with them.  Let them loose, in love and in forgiveness, and find an OB who can respect your wishes.

Another issue to face is if your OB is willing to follow you and little one.  I had a wonderful OB who offered to follow us through the pregnancy, but I had to think beyond her and her heart.  The entire staff as well as hospital policies must be considered.  My OB’s assistant questioned me about not giving him vaccinations when looking at Jedidiah’s birth plan.  She just didn’t get the unnecessary nature of the preventions because that was her routine.  Upon further questioning, I realized that my OB’s staff and hospital was not the one for us.

Although this list is by no means exhaustive, here are some questions to consider before you decide which OB and hospital you will use.

*Does your hospital do all that it can to keep mom and baby together, especially in these circumstances?

*What palliative care measures are offered to infants by your hospital?

((Palliative care focuses on relieving and preventing the suffering of patients whether their illness is terminal or not.))

*Does the hospital staff have experience with life-limiting conditions in which the family wants palliative care for the infant?

*If we choose to have oxygen and a feeding tube administered, will the hospital allow little one to stay with mother or does policy require a move to intensive care?

*Will the staff be flexible since the diagnosis is not a prognosis and we may change our desires as to the care of our child?

*Is your staff able to handle extra people in and out of the room so that family will have the opportunity to hold baby and say their goodbyes?

*After our child dies, will your staff honor our time of solitude with our baby, giving us time to grieve?

*Can all of our other children be allowed into the room, no matter their ages?

*If we desire, is there a separate space away from other babies in which to spend our final minutes or hours?

*What level of neonatal care is available at this facility?

*Will you allow a remembrance photographer to be with us?

 

 

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